Proxy Access

Another reason why companies avoid IPOs

In a recent New York Times article, Steven Davidoff Solomon listed several possible explanations for the significant decline in the number of initial public offerings (IPOs). Among the …

Mutual fund advisers’ ’empty voting’ raises new governance issues

The creation of the mutual fund will go down as one of the greatest innovations in financial history. It has provided tens, if not hundreds of millions of …

Moving forward on unwinding proxy access

The shareholder empowerment movement consists of activists who advocate shifting corporate decision-making authority to shareholders, and thus away from boards of directors and executive management. In effect, this …

Corporate governance by the board, not the government

The following op-ed was co-authored by Michael Wilt, a senior policy writer and editor with the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. Starbucks recently made a big change to its …

Debating proxy access with substance, not bluster

There has been much bluster, but very little substance, in the ongoing debate over proxy access – that is, the ability of certain privileged shareholders to have their …

Creating a foundation for a substantive debate on proxy-access proposals

If shareholder proposals on proxy access—that is, the ability of certain large shareholders to have their own slates of nominees to corporate boards included in the proxy materials …

The White House is using the SEC to crack down on fossil fuels

With just months left in office, the Obama administration appear set to get done by executive action everything it couldn’t get Congress to do over the past eight …

Shareholders continue to be misinformed about the costs and benefits of proxy access

The California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) and the New York City Comptroller’s Office both continue to use a deeply flawed CFA Institute report as support for their …

A deeply flawed CFA Institute report on shareholder empowerment

The following oped was coauthored by R Street Senior Fellow R.J. Lehmann. Over the past year and a half, the shareholder-empowerment movement has been deeply enamored with an August …

CFA Institute report on proxy access deeply flawed, R Street policy short finds

WASHINGTON (March 28, 2016) – As the 2016 corporate proxy season gets underway, shareholders should be skeptical of high-profile claims that proxy access conveys value, according to a …

Critiquing the CFA Institute’s report on proxy access

Is proxy access – that is, the ability of certain privileged shareholders to have their own slate of director nominees included in the proxy-solicitation materials public companies must …

Shareholder activism of the worst kind

For investors focused on maximizing portfolio value, there are some significant questions raised by recent empirical research indicating that shareholder proposals submitted by public-pension funds and labor-union-related entities …

Shareholder democracy isn’t what it’s cracked up to be

A decade ago, when then-President George W. Bush proposed a partial privatization of Americans' Social Security accounts, public debate largely centered on whether the change actually would mitigate …

If you don’t support the party line, don’t speak

I am extremely disappointed to announce that my invitation to speak at the fall conference of the Council of Institutional Investors has been withdrawn. The conference organizers have …

Public pension funds should not be used to further political agendas

WASHINGTON (Aug. 13, 2015) – It’s crucial that public pension funds focus on shareholder-wealth maximization and not furthering a political agenda, concludes a policy brief released today by …

Public-pension funds play with newest toy in corporate governance

Shareholder-wealth maximization generally is accepted as the default objective of an investment fund, though there are exceptions to the rule. For example, an investment adviser might create a …

Proxy access proposals do not maximize shareholder wealth, R Street study finds

WASHINGTON (July 15, 2015) – Shareholder-sponsored proxy access proposals, which have passed at 39 of the 65 companies that have voted on them in 2015, do not maximize …

Proxy Access: Shareholder democracy or creeping mercantilism?

Following certain rule changes made by Congress and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the 2015 proxy season has seen a deluge of shareholder proposals at U.S. public …

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