Proxy advice law which sparked fears it would reduce investor activism defeated in the Senate – ABC News

Australia’s parliament has thrown out the new restrictions on proxy advisory firms.

Three days after they were introduced into federal parliament, the Senate has overturned Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s regulations on proxy advisers. Proxy advisers are the people who advise big investors, including superannuation funds, on how to vote on issues impacting the re-election of company directors. Board directors are increasingly being taken to task by superannuation funds and other big institutional investors on a broad range of issues from CEO pay and climate change to sexual harassment and money laundering.

One week out from Christmas, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg passed regulation that would have stripped these advisers of their ability to provide their services under their existing financial services licence within 52 days. Decision influencers on notice The people who advise investors in big super funds how to vote on issues, such as chief executive pay and climate change, are under threat, writes Nassim Khadem. 

On Wednesday independent senator Rex Patrick moved to disallow the regulations, and succeeded by 29 votes to 25. The new regulatory regime which came into effect on February 7 lasted only three days.

Proxy advice law which sparked fears it would reduce investor activism defeated in the Senate – ABC News

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