lackRock, the world’s largest asset manager and one of many companies’ largest investors, has voted against compensation plans at several large companies this proxy season, including General Electric last week.
The asset manager voted against 15% of compensation-related resolutions at its Americas-based portfolio companies that held annual meetings in the first quarter of this year. That’s more than double the percentage of against votes in the same period last year, 7%, according to its investment stewardship report for the first quarter of 2021. Those percentages include both say-on-pay and say-on-frequency votes.
“With rising investor and stakeholder expectations, we believe that executive compensation will likely continue to garner significant attention,” a BlackRock spokesperson writes in an email. “Disproportionate executive pay — largely driven by outsized performance-based incentives in executive pay packages — is now widely scrutinized. The consideration for appropriately structured plans is of particular importance in the aftermath of the pandemic, which significantly impacted the average worker compensation, benefits, or ability to maintain employment.”Agenda – BlackRock Whacks Boards on Compensation Changes