Shareholders care little about Audit says House of Lords

“The Big Four’s domination of the large firm audit market in the UK is almost complete: in 2010 they audited 99 of the FTSE 100 largest listed firms, which change auditors every 48 years on average. It is clearly an oligopoly with all the attendant concerns about competition, choice, quality and conflict of interest. It gave no More…

Responsible NEST building

The UK’s new default retirement system, NEST, may not have invested a single penny in contributions but when it does, is determined to be a good Steward on behalf of the nation’s investors.

At a presentation to launch NEST’s Statement of Investment Principles last week, chairman Lawrence Churchill confirmed that, in addition More…

La langue de la diplomatie (the language of diplomacy)

Over the same weekend that the UN wrestled with the question of whether to intervene in the internal affairs of Libya, the French financial markets regulator, the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), issued a stunning piece of surprise, summary intervention in the proxy advisory market.

Having consulted with “the professionals concerned” according to their own press release More…

Let’s not do that – we can’t ask the shareholders in time!

Debate at the recent meeting of the European Corporate Governance Forum (ECGF) on the subject of related party transactions, ahead of the publication of a statement on the subject, underlined again the problems faced by European companies in effectively communicating with their shareholders on a key strategic issue.

On occasions where potential related party transactions More…

Showdown at Actelion throws spotlight on complex Swiss voting procedures

(c) Actelion Pharmaceuticals Ltd

The long-running spat between Swiss pharmaceutical company Actelion and major shareholder Elliott Advisors comes to a head at the forthcoming GM on the 5th May. Which gives us a timely opportunity to revist some of the problems shareholders face voting their Swiss shares.

This is going to be a contentious meeting, More…