How Funds View and Vote on Shareholder Proposals – Briefing: Governance

Ning Chiu of Davis Polk has some useful data on proxy advisors and fund votes, supporting the conclusion that clients appreciate the analysis of proxy advisory firms but make their own decisions about shareholder proposals: Funds must vote their proxies on behalf of 100 million shareholders in the aggregate and vote based on a range…

Minerva Analytics: Comment on SEC Proxy Roundtable

From Minerva Analytics’ comment to the SEC for the Proxy Roundtable (link to the full comment below): We note the activities of the immensely vocal, but narrow, anti-ESG and governance lobby which continues to ignore and disrespect the beliefs and preferences of capital providers. Investors use governance research and vote execution services to legitimately help…

Morningstar slams hidden backers behind anti-ESG campaign | Portfolio Adviser

Jackie Cook speaks to Portfolio Advisor about the CEO funded fake dark money front group, Main Street Investors Coalition. Their claim to “represent” individual investors is, as we’ve pointed out many times, completely bogus as not one single actual advocate for investors has endorsed or joined them. Morningstar has slammed an anti-environmental, social and governance…

‘Quiet diplomacy’ the weapon of choice for passive funds | Financial Times

About a fifth of the freely traded shares of the US equity market are now owned by index-tracking funds and passive institutional mandates, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices. This underlines the vital role played by the three largest managers in this space — BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street — in policing corporate standards.Larry Fink,…

Sarah Wilson on the Four Billion Reasons Not to Mess with Proxy Plumbing

Our deepest thanks to Sarah Wilson of Minerva Analytics for allowing us to post her thoughtful essay on the SEC’s proxy plumbing initiative, and for her support in our efforts to keep the Main Street Investors Coalition and their various other corporate-funded fake front groups from spreading disinformation about shareholders and proxy advisors.  Here is…

In Which We Hear (Indirectly) from Main Street Investors Coalition and Get a Surprising Claim About Their Views on Climate Change

When our post on the SEC Proxy Roundtable was reprinted on the Conference Board’s corporate governance blog, it elicited a response from Main Street Investors Coalition advisory board member Bernard Sharfman, who challenged our assertion that the corporate-funded fake front group led by a former energy industry lobbyist is a climate change denier. We have…

SEC’s New Roundtable on the Proxy Process

  The SEC is scheduling another roundtable on proxy voting — we note the inclusion of matters suggesting the influence of the corporate-funded, lobbyist-led, climate change denying Main Street Investors Coalition, which makes us concerned that the goal of this effort is suppression of votes by institutional investors. The SEC statement: Chairman Jay Clayton July…