Expand the Witness and Outreach of God’s Word and People
The ARP Investment Program is a low cost, expertly managed investment option for ARP churches and agencies that are seeking investment solutions for their contributed funds. The purpose of the Investment Program is to create an investment option for the people who are responsible for the ARP churches’ and ARP agencies’ funds while removing the administrative burden of day to-day management of these funds from the local church or agency.
As of December 2012, over $12M in endowments and permanent funds were invested in the program, which is overseen by the Investment Committee of General Synod that was created in 2005 for the sole purpose of handling investments for the denomination and its related entities.
The investment advisor to the Investment Program is Greystone Consulting, a business of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC. This firm’s preeminence in the investment consulting industry reaches back to 1973, when customized long-term investment strategies and managed accounts were offered to institutional and individual investors. The Charitable Trust Administration Corporation (CTAC) provides accounting and sub-account reporting for our program. CTAC, based in Cleveland, OH and established in 1995, is one of the leading full service administrative companies in the country with close to $1 billion under administration.
All funds invested through Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and administered by CTAC have oversight by the Synod central office in Greenville, SC. They are governed by the Investment Committee of Synod that meets quarterly to discern results, costs, utility, strategies and fund manager peer comparisons of the hired professionals mentioned.
The Investment Program is a pooled account management approach with individual accounts tracked via allocation and reporting subcontractor, CTAC. The invested funds have access to separately managed accounts in addition to mutual funds. The combined value of our accounts allows us to access investment managers in some asset classes that typically have high minimum investments (such as $1 million). The combined value also allows us to have lower investment expenses.
The following features and services of the Investment Program are very helpful to the trustees and boards of member churches and agencies as they fulfill their fiduciary and faithful steward responsibilities.
• Monthly Reports
We acknowledge that information about your finances is critical to operating your church/agency and carrying out your duties. In addition to the investment options, the Investment Program provides monthly investment reports on the performance and activity for each account 5 to 8 business days following the end of the month.
Online access to reporting is also available.
Along with reporting, the Investment Program generates distributions on a schedule that meets the church’s/ agency’s budget planning needs. The amount distributed is determined by the account holders and can be a percentage of total assets, a fixed dollar amount, or the amount may vary depending on the church/agency’s more immediate needs. You can also choose to reinvest all earnings and not take a distribution. This feature helps churches and agencies comply with restrictions on distributions as imposed by benefactors, boards, and/or the trustees.
• Contributions & New Investments
Additions to current investments and the creation of new funds can occur at any time during the month. Once a new or additional investment is received by Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, it is invested and put to work within forty-eight hours. The funds are valued daily so that deposits purchase units based on the previous day’s price.
The ARP Investment Program offers four options:
- Conservative Allocation of 20% equities and 80% fixed income and cash;
- Moderate Allocation of 50% equities and 50% fixed income and cash;
- Moderate Aggressive Allocation of 70% equities and 30% fixed income and cash; and
- Aggressive Allocation of 90% equities and 10% fixed income and cash.
We do not encourage splitting a single account into two or more of the allocations. The four options simply allow participants to look at the investment needs of each endowment and permanent fund of the church/agency and select the allocation that best meets the investment goal and needs for each fund.
An example might better illustrate what we mean: A church has three Investment Programs – cemetery, scholarship, and building. The cemetery fund must preserve the value of the invested assets and generate income for the care and upkeep of the cemetery. Therefore, either the Conservative or Moderate Allocation Fund may be the right choice.
The scholarship fund, on the other hand, needs to grow and generate funds from income and appreciation for the annual award to a deserving student. In this case, the Moderate or Moderate Aggressive Allocation Fund might be better.
Finally, the building fund is a reserve set aside for a planned renovation and expansion effort in five or more years, so the Moderate Aggressive Fund might be best. The best fund will depend on the situation of the participant including risk tolerance and investment time horizon.
Church/Presbytery/Agency Advised Fund Application (Download PDF).
For further information contact:
ARP Investment Committee
c/o Paul Bell
1 Cleveland St Ste 110
Greenville SC 29601-3696