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An Early Adopter of ESG Values

Mellody Hobson discusses Ariel Fund’s 35-year track record and how ESG is in Ariel’s DNA.

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In this interview Mellody Hobson candidly discusses her opinions on the market. These opinions are current as of the date of this interview but are subject to change. The information provided in this interview does not provide information reasonably sufficient upon which to base an investment decision and should not be considered a recommendation to purchase or sell any particular security. This material should not be considered an offer for any of the securities referenced. The information contained in the interview is not guaranteed as to its accuracy or completeness.

Performance data quoted represents past performance. Past performance does not guarantee future results. All performance assumes the reinvestment of dividends and capital gains, and represents returns of the Investor Class shares. The investment return and principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted. Performance data current to the most recent month-end may be obtained by visiting our website, As quoted in the article, for the past 12 months ended November 1, 2021, the Ariel Fund Investor Class (ARGFX) returned 69.57%. The Fund is a part of the Morningstar mid-cap value category. See standardized performance as of the most recent quarter-end, annual expense ratio and current holdings for the Fund by clicking here.

Past performance does not guarantee future results. Morningstar, Inc. is a nationally recognized organization that reports performance and calculates rankings for mutual funds. Each fund is ranked relative to all funds in the same category. Rankings are based on total returns. The article states that Ariel Fund (Investor Class) has “one of the longest and best track records in its mid-cap value category”.  More specifically, for the period ended 09/30/21, Ariel Fund ranked 15 out of 408, 14 out of 348, and 1 out of 250 among the funds in the Mid-Cap Value category for the one-, five- and ten-year periods. Rankings for the Institutional Class will differ. © 2021 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The information contained herein: (1) is proprietary to Morningstar and/or its content providers; (2) may not be copied or distributed; and (3) is not warranted to be accurate, complete or timely. Neither Morningstar nor its content providers are responsible for any damages or losses arising from any use of this information.

Although the article indicates the Fund’s focus includes mid-cap companies selling at 40% discounts to what they’re worth, the strategy itself does not reflect a specific percentage requirement.

We have a dedicated environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) team embedded within our research team for certain Ariel strategies, including Ariel Fund’s strategy. We have integrated a proprietary ESG-risk rating in our analysis of companies, and it is one factor, but not a primary factor, our investment teams use in evaluating companies.

Investing in small cap and mid-cap stocks is more risky and more volatile than investing in large cap stocks. The intrinsic value of the stocks in which the Fund invests may never be recognized by the broader market. Ariel Fund is often concentrated in fewer sectors than its benchmarks, and its performance may suffer if these sectors underperform the overall stock market. Investing in equity stocks is risky and subject to the volatility of the markets.