Azzad issues annual zakah and purification statements to American Muslim clients

(Falls Church, Virginia, 7/24/13) – Azzad Asset Management, advisor to the Azzad Funds and sponsor of the Ethical Wrap Program, announced today that it has completed annual Zakah and purification calculations for investors. Statements have been delivered to clients, who will use the calculated figures to determine their required charitable giving for the year. Assuming clients donate the amounts reported on their statements, Azzad representatives say that approximately $2 million will be donated to charity in the United States and abroad.

The firm uses a proprietary, self-developed software program to calculate the amount of money clients are advised give to charity in order to fulfill their religious obligations. Clients disburse the money to the charity or charities of their choice.

In a statement, Azzad said:

Charity is essential to the proper practice of Islamic investing, and we hold ourselves to the highest standard when it comes to calculating accurate Zakah and purification amounts for our clients. We are honored to help our clients with their religious duties and are gratified to facilitate the donation of close to $2 million to the underprivileged in society. We remain committed to the ethical, Islamic business practices on which we were founded and look forward to providing this essential service for many years to come, God willing.

In addition to providing wealth management services and operating as investment advisor to the Azzad Ethical Fund and Azzad Wise Capital Fund, the firm is an advocate of Islamic investing, including zakah and purification, and regularly educates the American Muslim community on these sometimes complex issues.

See: Calculating Zakah on Modern Financial Assets

As the third pillar of Islam, zakah is universally recognized among Muslims as a requirement for the proper management of their finances. It is an obligation that every Muslim must pay on certain assets that are at or above a minimum amount and have completed a holding period of 12 lunar months. Purification is an essential, though lesser known, aspect of Islamic investing that involves the donation of income earned from any unintended and unacceptable business activities by companies in which a shareholder is invested. Although Azzad follows strict Islamic guidelines when investing for its clients, it advises clients that it is possible to unintentionally earn small amounts of income deemed prohibited and that clients should take steps to cleanse accounts of such money. Since zakah is not paid on amounts coming from unacceptable or impure sources, purification amounts are calculated first and then subtracted from client account balances before determining zakah totals. The process results in two dollar amounts, both of which are given to charity.

Azzad follows best practices and guidelines issued by the Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI). AAOIFI is a consortium of Islamic scholars who convene to issue guidelines on Islamic investing and financial matters. AAOIFI Standard Number 21, which outlines the principles of Islamic investing and includes specific guidance on zakah and purification, is considered the authority for Islamic financial services firms.

Azzad’s annual zakah and purification calculations are determined one week prior to the beginning of Ramadan, the holy period of fasting and ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Ramadan began in early July this year. It is considered an especially blessed time to engage in worship, including charitable giving.

Azzad Asset Management, advisor to the Azzad Funds and sponsor of the Ethical Wrap Program, has been committed since 1997 to providing investment services designed to help clients enjoy optimum performance without compromising their values. The firm, based outside Washington, DC, is a registered investment advisor with the SEC.

Please consider a fund’s objectives, risks, charges and expenses carefully before you invest. The prospectus contains this and other important information. For a hard copy, please call 888-350-3369. Read the prospectus carefully before investing or sending money. The Azzad Funds are self-distributed. Azzad Asset Management serves as the Investment Advisor.

Contact: Investment Communications Director, Joshua Brockwell, 703-207-7005, ext. 109, joshua@azzad.net; Chief Compliance Officer, Manal Fouz, 703-207-7005, ext. 115, manalf@azzad.net

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