BlackRock stands by climate priorities, sees tougher shareholder votes – Reuters

Michelle Edkins, BlackRock’s (BLK.N) global head of investment stewardship, said in an interview on Tuesday that the pandemic is consuming corporate attention but indicated that BlackRock will not cut company directors slack as it decides whether to back their re-election. BlackRock will continue to judge whether boards have made progress against goals BlackRock has touted…

BlackRock’s Vow for Greener Planet to Get First Real-World Test – Bloomberg

Fink, who built the company from a mortgage-bond specialist into the largest asset manager in the world, has a crew of just a few dozen to prod the thousands of companies in BlackRock’s $7 trillion of funds to toe a more environmentally friendly line. With the annual proxy season set to kick off in earnest next month, when shareholders get…

Blackrock’s Larry Fink: Letter to CEOs

Blackrock’s Larry Fink wrote to the portfolio company CEOs to tell them that investors insist on more from them when it comes to climate change, from disclosure to strategy. Bottom line (literally): “Climate risk is investment risk.” Here is the letter: Dear CEO, As an asset manager, BlackRock invests on behalf of others, and I…

BlackRock’s Larry Fink: Climate change risk worse than Great Recession

BlackRock Chairman and CEO Larry Fink is warning that the financial risks of climate change are bigger than any crisis he’s experienced in his career on Wall Street. “We don’t have a Federal Reserve to stabilize the world like in the five or six financial crises that occurred during my 40 years in finance,” the…

BlackRock Joins World’s Largest Investor Group on Climate Change – WSJ

BlackRock Inc. said Thursday that it has joined Climate Action 100+, the world’s largest group of investors by assets pressuring companies to act on climate change, following criticism that the money manager hasn’t done enough to move the needle. “We believe evidence of the impact of climate risk on investment portfolios is building rapidly and…

Want a Bigger Say on Corporate Behavior? Move Your Money – The New York Times

From our former colleague Jackie Cook — index fund voting patterns may be an unhappy surprise to their investors. [W]hile index funds offered by different companies were often nearly indistinguishable in fees and performance, the voting behavior of the funds was very different. Vanguard and BlackRock, the two biggest fund managers, tended to side with…

Rise of Index ETFs Could Result in Complacent Corporate Governance | ETF Trends

Echoing (or catching up to) the findings of VEA Chair Bob Monks in his book Citizens Disunited, this reflects increasing concerns about “drone” investors. As more money flows into index-based stock mutual funds and ETFs, there may be less actively involved shareholders willing to push for changes during shareholder meetings. Index funds now account for…

Executive Compensation: The Role of Public Company Shareholders

Barbara Novick of BlackRock, Inc., one of the largest and most powerful institutional investors in the world, wrote about CEO pay and the role of shareholders. Of particular note is her assessment of proxy advisors, making it clear that proxy advisor clients appreciate the analysis and recommendations but have their own views. Proxy advisors are…

Boaz Weinstein Sues BlackRock Alleging Corporate-Governance Failings – WSJ

Saba Capital Management, a $1.7 billion hedge fund run by Boaz Weinstein, has sued BlackRock Inc., BLK 1.63% arguing the world’s largest asset manager has moved to block outsiders from gaining board seats at three of its funds and effecting change.In two lawsuits filed late Tuesday, Saba alleged that BlackRock’s actions run counter to the…