House "Compromise" on Proxy Access

Thanks to Ted Allen of Risk Metrics for his continuing coverage of the financial reform legislation. (House Lawmakers Propose Compromise on Proxy Access, 6/24/10) Today he reports that, as expected Rep. Barney Frank said House lawmakers won’t support Senator Dodd’s proposal to impose a 5% ownership threshold and a two-year holding period on investors who seek proxy access.

Frank said the House would agree to insert instructions in the bill to direct the SEC to consider the need for a holding period and a minimum ownership stake. Dodd will soon to present a revised offer on proxy access.

Today is supposed to be the final day of conference committee negotiations on the 2,000-page financial reform legislation. Besides proxy access, there are other contentious issues to be resolved, including whether to adopt a “Volcker rule” to restrict proprietary trading by banks and to force banks to spin off their derivative trading operations. Lawmakers also are discussing SEC funding and whether to extend fiduciary duty obligations to broker-dealers.

I think we can all readily embrace Frank’s “compromise.” Will the Senate?


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