Calpers Ups Pressure on Companies Over Executive Pay, Lack of Diversity 

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System voted against pay programs this year at 43 percent of the 2,145 U.S. public firms it owns stakes in, up from 18 percent in 2017, the system said Monday. One reason is closer scrutiny, said Simiso Nzima, investment director for corporate governance. In past years some firms may have received a passing grade despite a degree of misalignment between pay and company results, he said.

“Over one, two or three years, performance might look good, but over 10 years, the relationship sometimes just isn’t there,” Nzima said by phone. “We are not against management getting paid” as long as shareholders see long-term returns.

Among the companies receiving “Against” votes were Weight Watchers International Inc., which awarded Chief Executive Officer Mindy Grossman $33.4 million in her first year on the job, and Tesla Inc. after it proposed a stock-option grant to CEO Elon Musk that could yield him billions if the firm multiplies in size.

CalPERS, which for years has talked with companies about topics it considers important, also voted against 438 directors at 141 companies where engagements centering on a lack of diversity among board members “did not result in constructive outcomes.”

Source: Calpers Ups Pressure on Companies Over Executive Pay, Harassment – Bloomberg

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