The SEC Almost Completely Gives Up on Regulating Proxy Advisors

The massive and underhanded effort by corporate insiders to impose limits on the sole source of independent research, analysis, and regulations has almost completely failed. What the CEO-funded fake dark money front group the Main Street Investors Coalition wanted was to regulate proxy advisory firms (independent and hired — or not — by investors) like proxy…

The SEC should not limit the right of investors to sponsor shareholder resolutions: Guest Post from Timothy Smith, Walden Asset Management

The U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has just announced its plans to present a revised Rule that will limit the ability of investors to file shareholder resolutions for votes at company stockholder meetings. This comes amidst a concerted effort by certain business groups to sharply limit shareholders’ ability to exercise these rights as owners of…

U.S. SEC to consider new guidance on investor use of proxy advisors – Reuters

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Tuesday said it would hold a meeting next week on whether to publish new guidance regarding the responsibilities of investors when relying on so-called proxy advisors.The proposal comes amid a push by the corporate lobby to rein in proxy advisors, which recommend how investors should vote in…

Second Supplement to our SEC Comment on Proxy Advisory Firms

Second supplement to our previous comment: We endorse the comment of Ken Bertsch of the Council of Institutional Investors fully and incorporate it by reference into our own. We note that there has yet to be a single specific example of a proxy vote that was incorrectly or harmfully cast as a result of inappropriate,…

Despite SEC Action, Shareholders Push ExxonMobil for Progress on Climate Change

They can run, but they can’t hide. Efforts by ExxonMobil to squelch shareholder initiatives on climate change have led to escalation, including a high-visibility call to withhold votes for the nominees for the company’s board. Directors at Exxon Mobil Corp. are facing a withhold campaign from two institutional shareholders alleging the energy company has failed…

SEC Chairman Clayton: Statement on Shareholder Proposals Seeking to Require Mandatory Arbitration Bylaw Provisions

SEC Chairman Jay Clayton on a shareholder proposal to require mandatory arbitration of shareholder claims: A domestic, publicly-listed company has received a shareholder proposal that would require the company to take steps to adopt mandatory arbitration provisions. The company has asked the staff of the Division of Corporation Finance for informal guidance on whether the…

John Wilcox: Proxy Plumbing Comment

Longtime proxy solicitor John Wilcox has submitted one of the most thoughtful comment on the SEC’s proxy roundtable issues. No one is more familiar with the issues raised by the current complexity of the system that provides information and voting mechanics. An excerpt: The failures of the proxy system have traditionally been blamed on back-office…

On Governance: What Does the Near Future Hold for Proxy Advisors?

The Conference Board’s list of predictions about the outcome of the SEC’s proxy roundtable hearing looks more like a wish list than anything grounded in probability, with the exception of the comments by the Conference Board’s own Doug Chia: Governance Center Executive Director, Doug Chia observed coming out of the SEC roundtable, “What seemed to…