Institutional Shareholders Services (ISS) and the Council of Institutional Investors (CII) have launched a new educational website to respond to the CEO-funded fake dark money front groups, including the Main Street Investors Coalition, who are trying to suppress shareholder votes and limit access to independent research.
Unlike ratings agencies and audit firms, which are mandatory and paid for by the corporate executive they evaluated, independent research from proxy advisors is completely optional and paid for on a subscription basis by sophisticated financial institutions, the institutional investors who find it valuable to have access to independent research and voting recommendations.
The site was launched in conjunction with a new Morning Consult poll of nearly 2,000 registered voters that found voters do not want Senators to advance the Corporate Governance Reform and Transparency Act of 2017 (H.R. 4015). H.R. 4015 passed in December 2017 in the U.S. House of Representatives and that, among other changes, would permit public company management to potentially stall or block proxy adviser reports and recommendations to their investor clients.
“H.R. 4015 would harm workers and retirement savers across the country who entrust institutional investors with making informed investment decisions with their hard-earned money,” said Gary Retelny, ISS president and CEO. “This poll makes clear that American voters want their pension, IRA, and 401(k) managers to continue to receive unbiased, independent research and recommendations from proxy voting advisers and do not support a new law that would change the current system.”