Manifest-I

Welcome to Manifest-I the blog of Manifest, the proxy voting agency. Here we take a wide ranging view of topical governance and stewardship issues. Please feel free to add your comments and join the debate.

FTSE 100 pension deficits rise LCP's annual survey finds

FTSE 100 companies paid more out in dividends to shareholders last year than the combined pension deficit figure according to the annual Accounting for Pensions report produced by pensions advisers Lane, Clark Peacock (LCP).

The survey found that the combined pension deficit of the 56 companies in the FTSE 100 that disclosed a deficit at their 2015 More…

Sports Direct faces resolution at AGM calling for independent review of its employment practices

Besieged retailer Sports Direct has responded to further criticism of its governance practices. This time it is the poor standard of its board evaluation procedures which Manifest’s recent AGM report has flagged as a clear breach of the UK Governance Code. Last Friday, a regulatory news bulletin announced that “an external evaluation of the board is planned More…

Top UK companies and investors update say on pay guidance

GC100

The UK’s GC100 and Investor Group – made up of top general counsel, company secretaries and corporate governance heads at fund manager groups – has published its latest remuneration reporting guidance replacing the original version which was produced following the updating of pay disclosure regulations in 2013 which included the introduction of binding remuneration policies approved at More…

Powers to publish pay gap reporting regulations to come in to force in the UK

Justine Greening MP

The UK government will have the power to make, through regulations, the framework for gender pay gap reporting by companies with 250 or more employees when Section 78 of the Equality Act 2010 comes into force on 22nd August.

Section 78 states that the regulations may require employers to publish More…

Responsible investment campaigners welcome new trustee guidance for DC pension schemes

WEB-simonhoward

The UK’s Pension Regulator’s new code of practice for occupational trust-based defined-contribution (DC) pension schemes and the publication of six ‘how to’ guides to give comprehensive guidance to trustees has been warmly welcomed by a number of responsible investment groups. The UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF) said that the investment governance guide is More…

UK's Financial Reporting Council publishes revised audit firm governance code

The UK’s Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has revised the audit firm governance code aiming to improve its visibility, relevance to investors and increase its alignment to the UK’s corporate provenance code. This follows a review carried out into the implementation of the original 2010 code between 2014-2015 and a consultation into the draft revised code published More…

UK's Executive Pay Working Group releases final recommendations

The Executive Remuneration Working Group, supported by the UK’s Investment Association, has produced 10 recommendations aimed at regaining the public’s trust on executive pay, simplifying the pay structures of top company bosses and improving the alignment of their interests with those of their shareholders in its recently published final report.

Nigel Wilson CEO of Legal More…

Takeover Panel annual report published

gordon langley takeover panel

The UK’s Takeover Panel recently published its 2015-16 annual report. M&A activities in the period under review were similar to those seen in the preceding year according to the report. The report contains information about the work of the Panel during the year, including retrospective disclosure in relation to two letters of private censure and More…

The Institute of Directors hopes framework will improve director quality

btjudge

With a backdrop of damning reports from MPs published last week on the demise of the retailer BHS and on poor working practices at Sports Direct, which both identified weak corporate governance as partly to blame for company failures, the Institute of Directors (IoD) has launched its Director Competency Framework which it said sets More…

North American business leaders back corporate governance principles

Jamie Dimon
Chair & CEO JP Morgan

A group of 13 US and Canadian fund managers, pension funds and company bosses have taken the unprecedented step of endorsing a set of corporate governance principles in a bid to quell rising unease and conflict around US governance standards.

In an open letter the business leaders, who include Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive of More…