Agenda – Glass Lewis, ISS Push New ESG Scoring

Proxy advisory firms Glass Lewis and ISS this week announced a spate of new launches and updates to the way environmental, social and governance data and disclosures will be assessed and featured in reports to investors this year, and to the way high-level governance-quality scores will be calculated. The updates precede a 2022 proxy season…

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…

VEA Vice Chair Nell Minow Comments on SEC’s Proposed Proxy Advisor Rule

VEA Vice Chair Nell Minow has submitted a comment to the SEC on its proposed rule about proxy advisory firms. The comment is attached in full below. Some excerpts: My most important point: There is no justification for any regulation of proxy advisors beyond the rules already in place. The claims by issuers (and their fake,…

Agenda – Glass Lewis Raises the Bar on E+S Incentive Metrics

Proxy advisor Glass Lewis wants companies to offer more robust disclosure about their use of environmental and social incentive metrics, according to the firm’s 2022 proxy voting guidelines. While Glass Lewis won’t require the use of these metrics, it will consider them in say-on-pay analyses. Agenda – Glass Lewis Raises the Bar on E+S Incentive…

Sock Puppet Ike Brannon Continues to Lie About Proxy Advisors

 As we have noted before, Ike Brannon likes to lie about proxy advisors while omitting any reference to his affiliation with the CEO-funded dark money efforts to limit investor access to the sole source of independent research on proxy issues. Note that his comments appear in the unedited commentary section of Forbes, barely above Qnon…

SEC.gov | SEC Proposes Rule Amendments to Proxy Rules Governing Proxy Voting Advice

The Securities and Exchange Commission today voted to propose amendments to its rules governing proxy voting advice.  The proposed amendments aim to address concerns expressed by investors and others that the current rules may impede and impair the timeliness and independence of proxy voting advice and subject proxy voting advice businesses to undue litigation risks…

NAM Sues SEC Over Suspension of Proxy Advisory Firm Rule

The NAM is filing suit against the SEC for refusing to enforce the rule without going through the official process to change or replace it, as required under the Administrative Procedure Act. Agencies cannot set aside regulations they happen to disagree with, and the NAM is contending that the SEC has acted unlawfully by effectively…

SEC Suspends Trump-Era Proxy Advisory Rule

From SEC Chair Gary Gensler [footnotes omitted, emphasis added]: In September 2019, the Commission issued an interpretation and guidance addressing the application of the proxy rules to proxy voting advice businesses. Last July, the Commission adopted amendments to Rules 14a-1(l), 14a-2(b), and 14a-9 concerning proxy voting advice. I am now directing the staff to consider…

SEC Announces Suspension of Controversial Proxy Advisory Rule: ISS Responds

Institutional Shareholder Services issued the following statement in light of today’s announcement by U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman, Gary Gensler, regarding the application of the proxy rules to proxy voting advice: “We welcome the SEC’s announced decision to consider revisiting its proxy adviser rulemaking, which we believe was ill-conceived, inconsistent with the law, and…