Sallie Krawcheck has long preached the financial benefits of gender diversity in Corporate America.
The former Wall Street executive is now putting her money where her mouth is.
On Wednesday, Krawcheck took a major stake in the first and only mutual fund in the U.S. that focuses on investing in companies with strong track records for advancing female leadership.
"While gender diversity is a nice-to-do, I have become convinced that gender diversity is also a smart-to-do ... and an under-appreciated driver of superior company performance," Krawcheck wrote in a LinkedIn Influencer post titled "Investing 2.0: A Modern Way to Invest."
The new fund, dubbed the Pax Ellevate Global Women's Index Fund, seeks to measure and capture the contribution of gender diversity to business success. It will replace the Pax World Global Women's Equality Fund (PXWEX).
Thirty-one percent of the board seats and 24% of executive management positions of the companies in the new fund are held by women, compared with a global average of just 11% for each. All of the companies in the fund have at least one woman on their board and 97% have at least two.
Krawcheck pointed to research that indicates diverse leadership teams suffer less groupthink, generate higher returns on equity, focus more on clients, enjoy greater innovation and feature lower gender pay disparities.
Yet "progress on gender diversity in corporate America has actually stalled ... and in the financial services industry we've gone backward," said Krawcheck, who previously served as chief financial officer of Citigroup (C) and head of Bank of America's (BAC) Merrill Lynch division.
Krawcheck recently told CNN Money that Wall Street went into the crisis, "white, male and middle aged" and came out "whiter, male-er and middle age-er."
In an effort to fix this issue, Krawcheck has invested in the Ellevate global professional women's network, which sports 34,000 members and was formerly named 85 Broads.
There are some on Wall Street who don't think that socially conscious investing can be profitable.
Krawcheck even joked: "Isn't impact investing about eating a lot of granola and hugging a bunch of trees?"
But she believes the next wave of investors "seek to earn a fair return AND express their values."
The legendary archer of Sherwood Forest is taking aim at the stock market. Robinhood is a new trading app that promises users free trades and no account minimums.
That's a big departure from the $7 to $10 fees per trade that other brokers which cater to the masses like E*Trade (ETFC) and Charles Schwab (SCHW) charge. These firms offer discounts from time to time, but only if a customer has a large account MOREHeather Long - May 17, 2014 8:36 AM ET
Sallie Krawcheck was one of the most powerful women on Wall Street before she left her job as president of wealth management at Bank of America (BAC) in 2009.
These days she's helping to promote diversity in finance through a network of 30,000 female professionals, known as 85 Broads. (Krawcheck plans to change the name, which refers to the address of Goldman Sachs' former headquarters.)
Speaking at an event hosted by the MOREBen Rooney - May 9, 2014 11:18 AM ET
Twitter is trending today on Wall Street, but for all the wrong reasons.
Shares of the social media site tumbled to a new low Tuesday, the first day that company insiders were allowed to sell the stock following the company's initial public offering.
The stock dropped 18%, sinking below $32 a share for the first time since Twitter (TWTR) began trading last November.
The sell-off comes at the end of a six-month "lock-up" MOREBen Rooney - May 6, 2014 4:12 PM ET
Four things were made quite clear at a cocktail reception for Berkshire Hathaway shareholders Friday night at the Borsheims jewelry store in Omaha.
1. Berkshire investors absolutely adore Warren Buffett. (And Charlie Munger too.)
2. Few worry about what will happen to Berkshire after Buffett retires or succumbs to the same fate that lies ahead for all of us.
3. Even fewer shareholders seem willing to entertain the thought of selling their Berkshire stock MORE
Most people don't pick up Shakespeare's plays when they're looking for investing advice, but the Bard of Avon did write frequently about money matters.
Consider that the word "rich" appears more than 150 times in his plays. "Gold" gets over 200 mentions, and "debt" about 40.
There are even college courses on "Bardonomics" like Duke University's "Shakespeare and Financial Markets."
As the world celebrates the 450th birthday of English literature's leading man MOREHeather Long - Apr 26, 2014 9:00 AM ET
It should be another good year for the stock market. Not spectacular, but positive.
That's the general consensus among the investment strategists CNNMoney polled in a recent survey. See the full results here.
Of course, some were more bullish than others, and one was downright bearish.
Gary Flam, a portfolio manager at Bel Air Investment Advisors, had the lowest target for the S&P 500 among the 26 investment professionals in CNNMoney's survey. He MOREBen Rooney - Apr 8, 2014 8:38 AM ET
Worrying economic data out of China had raised expectations in recent weeks that Beijing would respond with stimulus measures in an effort to stabilize growth.
The State Council obliged late Wednesday, announcing a slate of new measures including railway and urban redevelopment projects, along with a tax break for small businesses.
Market reaction on Thursday was muted. After an initial boost, the Shanghai Composite ended the day in negative territory. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was little changed.
There are MORECharles Riley - Apr 2, 2014 11:16 PM ET
Investors spooked by a slowing Chinese economy last week pulled $1.5 billion out of Chinese equity funds tracked by EPFR Global -- the largest amount ever for this time of year.
The Boston-based fund tracker attributed the decline to worries over the Chinese government's ability to shore up the economy and implement promised reforms without triggering a dramatic deceleration.
China's top leaders have pledged financial reforms that would give market forces more influence MORESophia Yan - Mar 24, 2014 2:37 AM ET
Pimco's corporate culture has suffered since the giant bond fund lost one of its top leaders, according to a report issued Tuesday.
Morningstar, an influential investment research firm in Chicago, said that the resignation of CEO Mohamed El-Erian in January raised "a higher degree of uncertainty" about the world's largest bond manager.
Morningstar did not change the ratings on any of Pimco's funds though. Morningstar rates funds via stars and they are MOREBen Rooney - Mar 18, 2014 3:44 PM ET
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