Portland Will No Longer Invest In Walmart

In its continuing quest to become a caricature of outsiders’ clichés , the city of Portland, Oregon has decided to stop investing in Walmart. Wait, Portland invests in Walmart? Yes, just under 3% of the city’s portfolio consists of Walmart bonds, the last of which will mature in 2016. The city’s total Walmart holdings were $36 million.

Walmart’s stock is down slightly after the company announced worse-than-anticipated quarterly results, so maybe this decision has nothing to do with politics or sustainability, and could be simply a wise financial move. Except, nope, this is Portland. Last fall, the city council passed what they call “socially responsible investment principles,” investing only in companies that don’t raise health, labor, environmental, or other ethical concerns.

“A city’s investments should reflect the values of its taxpayers, and Wal-Mart is consistently out of step of Portland values,” a local representative of the United Food and Commercial Workers union said in a statement. UFCW is the union behind OUR Walmart, the group seeking to organize Walmart employees, publicizing workers’ problems and organizing protests.

Portland jettisons Walmart investments from city portfolio [Portland Business Journals]