Brunel’s Stewardship Policy

We recommend Brunel’s excellent stewardship policy as a model for institutional investors everywhere. Stewardship is defined as the job of taking care of something, such as a company or property. As investors, we use the term assets. Brunel is committed to responsible stewardship and seeks to contribute to the ‘care’ of all the assets under…

SpencerStuart Board Index 2018

The 2018 SpencerStuart Board Index has been released. Some of the highlights: S&P 500 boards appointed 428 new directors during the 2018 proxy year, the most since 2004 and an increase of 8% from 2017. » 57% of boards added at least one new director. Nearly two-thirds (65%) of the incoming class come from outside…

PWC on Corporate Boards: Cyber Threats, #Metoo, Diversity, and What Shareholders Want

PWC on Corporate Boards: Cyber Threats, #Metoo, Diversity, and What Shareholders Want PWC’s annual director survey is one of our most trusted resources on corporate governance from the perspective of the boardroom, and this year’s edition has some significant findings on issues like diversity, CEO pay, climate change, cybersecurity, and the gap between what board members…

2018 Report on Corporate Political Contributions from CPA

Every year we look forward to the latest update from the Center for Political Accountability about corporate political contributions. They are one of our favorite sources for information about the use of shareholder money for campaign contributions and lobbying. This year’s study title is blunt: Collision Course: The Risk Companies Face When Their Political Spending…

ISS and CII Join Forces for Protect the Shareholders

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…

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…

Indexed Investments and “The Problem of Twelve”

John Coates has a thoughtful paper on the legal and economic challenges of “the problem of twelve,” the prospect of a majority of shares in public companies being managed by just twelve entities, in effect twelve people. [T]he rise of indexing presents a sharp, general, political challenge to corporate law. The prospect of twelve people…