Ferrexpo forced to hold second vote on director re-appointments

Ferrexpo, which manufactures iron ore pellets which are used in the steel industry, has received a high level of opposition from shareholders to a number of resolutions at its AGM this week (19th May) including those relating to the appointment of non-executive directors.… Read the rest

More UK companies face investor opposition to executive pay this week

Standard Life, which as an institutional investor is known for its stewardship approach, faced opposition to the pay awarded to its chief executive, Keith Skeoch at its recent AGM (17th May). The investment and insurance company received a 22% vote against it remuneration report. Read the rest

US legislators consider role of proxy voting firms

US legislators held a hearing recently (17th May) which considered possible bills which they believe would improve US financial transparency, regulation and capital market formation, including a proposal “To improve the quality of proxy advisory firms for the protection of investors and the U.S.Read the rest

Executive Pay watch emphasises US pay gap between CEOs and other employees

The US federation of trade unions, the AFL-CIO, has released its latest Executive Paywatch data which it says shows the average CEO of an S&P 500 company received an annual income of $12.4 million in 2015—335 times more money than the average rank-and-file worker. … Read the rest

US audit firms to disclose the partners who carry out audits

The US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) has  announced that its rules to improve the transparency of the audit by disclosing the names of audit engagement partners, as well as information about other firms that participate in the audits, were approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission.… Read the rest

Nomination committees no longer the poor relation?

Nomination committees have been the poor relation of board committees, according to advisory firm, Ernst & Young (EY). However this appears to be changing as companies adapt to demands for a more professional approach to director recruitment and to scrutiny about board diversity and effectiveness.… Read the rest

Two thirds of large UK businesses have suffered a cyber attack in the past year

Two thirds (65%) of large UK companies have admitted to having suffered a cyber breach in the past year, according to a survey conducted for the government.

The study also found that 69% of companies said that senior managers were aware of the problem but only just over half (51%) had taken the recommended actions to avoid cyber attacks. … Read the rest

Call on Vanguard to join others in responding to a low carbon economy future

Responsible investment advocacy group, ShareAction has called on US asset manager, Vanguard, to demonstrate its commitment to company engagement on climate issues by voting in favour of shareholder resolutions on climate risk at ExxonMobil and Chevron, in an open letter to its chief executive Bill McNabb.… Read the rest

Governments pledge to fight corruption as pressure grows for more action

An international anti-corruption summit in London this week has led to an international communiqué in which countries have signed up to taking action to address corruption and reduce financial secrecy which hurts developing countries and their people. Participants also produced their own statements of the actions they were taking in their countries.… Read the rest

Dissent on pay continues at UK AGMs

Investors showed their concerns over executive pay at more AGMs this week. The largest rebellion was at bookmaker Ladbrokes which faced a 42% vote against its remuneration report – this was just above the 40% vote against received last year.

Ladbrokes has agreed to merge with another betting company, Coral, and stated in its annual report that it would undertake a review of the remuneration policy of the combined company once the deal is completed.… Read the rest