Archive | January, 2013

SEC Announces Panelists for Roundtable on Decimalization

The SEC today announced the panelists who will participate in its roundtable next week on decimalization. The February 5 roundtable, which will evaluate the impact of tick sizes on the securities markets, will consist of three panels. Participants on the first panel will address the impact of tick sizes on small and mid-sized companies, the […]

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GMI Analyst Updated: Webinar January 31

GMI Ratings announced today the launch of an enhanced version of its flagship product, GMI Analyst, an integrated web-based platform providing research on environmental, social, governance (ESG) and accounting-related risks affecting the performance of public companies. According to Ric Marshall, GMI Ratings’ Chief Analyst and Director of Development, (more…)

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Report Shows Carbon Divestment Does Not Increase Portfolio Risk

As students around the country are asking their university endowments to do the climate math and divest from fossil fuel companies, the financial community is responding with its own math, the “investment math,” to determine the risk impact of carbon divestment. Aperio Group LLC, a financial advisory firm that manages customized portfolios for a range of […]

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Active Ownership Increases Corporate Returns

Elroy Dimson, Oguzhan Karakas, and Xi Li analyze an extensive proprietary database of corporate social responsibility engagements with US public companies over 1999–2009. Engagements address environmental, social, and governance concerns. They are followed by a one-year abnormal return that averages 1.8%, comprising 4.4% for successful and zero for unsuccessful engagements. (more…)

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Financing Small-Cap Companies: A Director's Guide

That’s how I would have titled this excellent book by Adam Epstein. Instead, look for The Perfect Corporate Board: A Handbook for Mastering the Unique Challenges of Small-Cap Companies. While it briefly touches on other topics, the key focus is plain in the following statement from the introduction: (more…)

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Rising Stars of Corporate Governance

The Ira M. Millstein Center for Global Markets and Corporate Ownership at Columbia Law School is now accepting nominations for the annual Rising Stars of Corporate Governance award. This award recognizes people who, while young and possibly new to the field of corporate governance, are making their marks as outstanding analysts, experts, (more…)

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What to Expect in Regulation/Litigation

Center for Corporate and Securities Law 2013 Directors Forum Bonus Session looks like great add-on to the main event, Directors Forum 2013: Directors, Management & Shareholders in Dialogue, University of San Diego – Institute for Peace & Justice, Sun – Tues, 1/27-29/2013. See ten part coverage from 2012. The bonus session is Sunday, January 27, 2013 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. […]

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SVNACD Event – Corporate Boards: Strategy, Not Just Operations Review

Bob Frisch is the managing partner of Strategic Offsites Group. He has more than 29 years of experience working with executive teams and boards worldwide on their most critical strategic issues. He has published three articles on teams and decision making in the Harvard Business Review: “Who Really Makes the Big Decisions in Your Company” (12/11), “When Teams Can’t […]

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Review: Who's in the Room?

Who’s in the Room?: How Great Leaders Structure and Manage the Teams Around Them reminds me of the classic political science booklet by Lloyd S Etheredge, The Case of the Unreturned Cafeteria Trays: an Investigation Based on Theories of Motivation and Human Behavior (pdf). Both take a simple problem and explore various alternatives to how it can […]

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Costco: How I Voted – Proxy Score 25%

Costco ($COST) is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 1/24/2013. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of four funds when I voted on 1/22/2012.  I voted with management only 25% of the time.  View Proxy Statement. Warning: Be sure to vote each item on the proxy. Any items left blank will be voted in […]

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Five Traits Characterize Effective Island Style Leadership

Guest post from Glenn Furuya, courtesy of Pacific Business News, 1/18/2013, page 31. The article caught my eye soon after returning from the funeral of my wife’s great aunt, Kay Kramer (98), who embodied the three cultures Furuya discusses below, both in the flesh and through her work and life.  Having read hundreds of publications and worked side-by-side with many […]

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Video Friday: Peter Reali of TIAA-CREF Discusses Proxy Voting

Peter Reali, Lead Corporate Governance Analyst, TIAA-CREF, discusses his process for voting over 100,000 discrete ballot items each season with the Darla Stuckey of the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals. Mr. Reali talks about the use of proxy advisory service data, engagement with issuers, timing, the interaction between governance experts and asset (more…)

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How Mutual Funds Voted on Political Disclosures

As we look back on the 2012 elections one thing is clear, money flowed like water with any barrier that might have contained it removed by Citizens United. Writing for the court in the 5-4 decision, Judge Kennedy opined: With the advent of the Internet, prompt disclosure of expenditures can provide shareholders and citizens with the information needed […]

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Take Action: Write to Chevron to Protect Shareowner Rights

Chevron’s subpoena of e-mails in this case goes well beyond the individual players and is a threat to the communication rights of all shareowners. Action: Please take 60 seconds right now to send a message similar to the following to Chevron: I write to protest Chevron’s subpoena seeking emails and communications from Trillium Asset Management […]

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Former Corp Fin Staff Speaks

Don’t miss upcoming important events from TheCorporateCounsel.net. Tune in tomorrow, Wednesday, for the webcast – “The ‘Former’ Corp Fin Staff Speaks” – to hear former Senior Staffers from the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance Brian Breheny of Skadden Arps, Marty Dunn of O’Melveny & Myers, Linda Griggs of Morgan Lewis and Dave Lynn of TheCorporateCounsel.net and Morrison & […]

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100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior

CHESTER, NEW JERSEY, January 14, 2013. Trust Across America, global leaders in information, standards and data, and Who’s Who in trustworthy business has selected 2013’s Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior. These people collectively represent a group that can genuinely transform the way organizations do business. Consider following us on Twitter. According to […]

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Free Handbook: Corporate Governance and Securities Laws for 2013

Public companies are subject to an extensive and complex regulatory regime under the U.S. federal securities laws and stock exchange listing rules. This free handbook from Vintage Filings provides an overview of the securities law and stock exchange reporting, disclosure and corporate governance requirements applicable to public companies and their officers, directors and large shareholders. […]

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News From Indian Proxy Advisors

Importance of Proxy Advisory Firms in Indian Capital Markets Shriram Subramanian, the Founder and MD of InGovern Research Services, in a recent interview with “Report Insights” highlighted the importance of proxy advisory firms in Indian capital markets. The extracts of the interview can be read in InGovern’s monthly publication: Governance Watch – December 2012 Newsletter (more…)

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Call for Papers – Journal of Corporate Finance

Since the Cadbury Report was published in 1992 in the UK, there has been increasing emphasis not just by UK regulators but also by regulators from other countries, including the USA and Continental Europe, of the role of boards of directors in corporate governance. However, 20 years down the line it is still uncertain whether […]

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Corporate Governance Quick Bites

Holly Gregory’s post Applying Securities Laws to Social Media Communications is the best I’ve seen on when the SEC’s Enforcement Division is likely to recommend an enforcement case to the Commission based on the potential for liability arising from disclosures by corporate officers through social media. As widely reported, including by WSJ, Netflix and CEO Reed Hastings both received Wells Notices from […]

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International Review Focuses on Executive Compensation

I received my copy of the November edition of Corporate Governance: An International Review a couple of weeks ago (yes, they usually run late). It is a special issue on executive compensation with the usual diversity of well-researched articles from around the globe. I notice that most, if not all, of the articles are available online […]

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Campaign for Trust Kicks Off Campaign

After a well-documented 10+ years of declining trust in government, business and the media, Trust Across America (TAA) and its ambassadors are launching the Campaign for Trust™, a two-year initiative to reverse this cycle. Said Barbara Brooks Kimmel, a Co-founder and the Executive Director: (more…)

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Does the Gender of Directors Matter?

Abstract: How does gender-balance affect the working of boards of directors? I examine boards that have been required for two decades to be relatively gender-balanced: boards of business companies in which the Israeli government holds a substantial equity interest. I construct a novel database based on the detailed minutes of 402 board- and board-committee meetings […]

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