Public pension funds across the country are battling state legislation that would require them to divest from companies doing business in Iran — a set of securities that could comprise up to 25% of the MSCI EAFE index. If some of the bills are passed in their broadest forms, institutions might be forced to sell nearly $18 billion in affected assets. Federal law prohibits most U.S. companies from doing business in Iran, and the bills being introduced now focus on foreign-based firms. However, some state legislatures are paring the reach of their bills to focus solely on energy-related stocks, which greatly reduces the amount and number of stocks that would have to be sold.

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