Wall Street Meltdown…

Let it not be said that the world of shareholder oversight and fiscal prudence is without its lighter moments. Here are two offerings from YouTube contributor LMcDuff with a musical take on the demise of the US financial system.

Wall Street Meltdown is his first offering and chronicles the financial crisis as it developed duing 2007 to the backdrop of Billy Joel’s 1989 hit single “We didn’t start the fire”.… Read the rest

FSA Code of Practice for Remuneration

The FSA’s new  draft code of remuneration code of practice has put good governance front and centre by insisting that remuneration is tied to effective risk management. The proposed policy is a follow-up to the letters written to the CEOs of FSA authorised companies in October 2008.… Read the rest

The market is dead, long live the market

Nick Hassel in The Times commented earlier this month: “The stock market has been declared dead many times before. We heard this in 1979, in 2003, and are hearing it now in 2009. The consolation is that, on those two previous occasions, the desire to obituarise was just another sign that shares had touched their low.”

Maybe so, and perhaps that accounts for the emergence of guidance notes aimed at educating pension trustees about their wider responsibilities as investors.… Read the rest

Strong support for shareholder resolution at Novartis AGM

Some 31.1% of votes cast at the AGM of Novartis, held in Switzerland on Tuesday, supported the proposal by Ethos and eight other shareholders that the company should provide shareholders with an annual advisory vote on the remuneration report. A further 2.9% of the votes cast were in the form of positive abstentions.… Read the rest

Global Investors Press Obama for Action on Governance

Leading global investors, with assets totalling over $1.3 trillion, have written to US President Barack Obama urging the new administration to implement “critical” legal reforms to US financial markets and corporate governance practices.

The institutions, representing the pension savings of some 15 million individuals globally, called for fundamental reforms as a means of restoring investor trust in the integrity of US capital markets and public corporations.… Read the rest

US Proxy Reform, Delaware Steps Up

The US has taken another step forward to bring the US proxy process into line with the rest of the world. Late last week (20/02/2009) the Delaware State Bar Association received a number of proposed amendments from its Corporation Law Section Council members.… Read the rest

Audit oversight: SEC stalls

As the Madoff and Sanford scandals have highlighted, co-operation between regulatory authorities is a crucial protection mechanism for shareholders. The news that the SEC is pulling away from its committment to work with the EU on audit inspection is therefore especially disappointing.… Read the rest

Chrysalis Director Payoffs

Chrysalis is no stranger to director payoff issues, as reported in the Daily Telegraph last year. This year’s annual report is equally revealing.  During 2008 Michael Connole received compensation for loss of office of £410,000, while Richard Huntingford received compensation for loss of office of £984,000.Read the rest

Novartis voting shambles exposes system weakness

As Swiss pharma giant Novartis squared up to the first of the 2009 European season’s shareholder resolutions, it looks like voting irregularities downstream may be calling the results into question. Novartis are said to be ‘furious’ at the apparent foul ups caused by the overly complicated ‘chain of intermediaries’ which have left some shareholders with blocked shares, despite the express statements from Novartis that they are a non-blocking security in Switzerland.… Read the rest

Governance crisis continues at Sibir Energy

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