While we do not screen out companies from our investment universe, except for specific custom portfolios we manage for institutional investors, we adopt a positive engagement approach and discuss ESG issues with the management of the companies in which we invest or consider investing on behalf of our clients. We use the information gathered during these meetings both to inform our investment decisions and to encourage company management to improve procedures and policies. Fidelity believes that strong management creates long-term shareholder value and we generally support management of companies in which we have invested fund and account assets. We also recognize, however, that the company's shareholders, the owners of the company, have a responsibility to evaluate how management and directors are performing, and how shareholders' rights and ownership interests are handled. As shareholders, we may form our own views on the strategy and governance of a particular business, and our views may inform our interactions with companies and our proxy voting practices. We also engage with companies' management and directors, through visits and meetings, to confer on topics, such as ESG issues, that we believe could affect long-term performance. Fidelity believes that high standards of corporate responsibility generally make good business sense and have the potential to protect and enhance investment returns.
Generally, ESG matters serve as a factor in security valuation and investment management and have for a long time. One key to analyzing any security is to develop an understanding of the material factors that contribute to the value of that security. These factors are most often understood to be financial factors, yet other factors that may be construed as non-financial could be viewed as material to the value of a security. Our investment staff includes all material factors into their security analysis process as they assess the valuation and outlook of a security.