Guidewire Software, Inc. provides software products for property and casualty (P&C) insurers. It offers a technology platform supports core insurance operations, including underwriting and policy administration, claim management, and billing. Guidewire is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on December 3, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked. I voted with the Board’s recommendations 40% of the time. View Proxy Statement.
Archive | November, 2015
Microsoft Corporation (MFST), a technology company, develops, licenses, and supports software products, services, and devices worldwide. Microsoft is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is on December 2, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of five funds when I checked. I voted with the Board’s recommendations 62% of the time. View Proxy Statement. iiWisdom provides a nice interactive viewing platform that makes Microsoft’s proxy a little easier to read. I recommend it.
Post-doctoral fellows and senior associates in the fields of corporate governance and/or law and finance: applications from highly qualified candidates who are interested in working with the Harvard Law School Program on Corporate Governance are now being accepted.
Applicants for a position of a post-doctoral fellow should be interested in spending between one and three years in preparation for a career in academia or in policy research. Applicants should have a J.D. or an LL.M. degree from a U.S. law school, or a doctoral degree in finance, accounting or business economics. Applicants may also be candidates who would be completing work on a doctoral dissertation in law or another discipline during their period as fellows. Continue Reading →
Publisher’s note: I wasn’t going to publish anything today but I couldn’t resist this recent news from Sanford Lewis, Esq. and Sonia Kowai of Zevin Asset Management about a denial of a no-action letter that allows shareholders to hold mutual funds to account. Imagine what the world could look like if mainstream funds lived up to their own hype.
This is the perfect reason for Thanksgiving and is the best news I’ve heard all year. For the first time we have the possibility that mutual funds might be so embarrassed by the wide gap between what they say and what they do that they may actually start voting as their investors would wish. This is a real game changer and could be the start of something HUGE if similar proposals are filed at other fund companies and shareholders hold them accountable.
Climate change is the first issue, and is critically important, but there are other issues to address as well. Many thanks to Sanford Lewis, Sonia Kowal of Zevin Asset Management LLC,, Jackie Cook of Fund Votes, Ceres, First Affirmative Financial Network, and everyone who worked to obtain these critical new rights. Continue Reading →
Recently, with the revelations about Exxon’s past support for climate denial organizations hitting the news, there has been a fresh interest in the ways oil companies have used their lobbying and contributions to oppose climate change solutions. For example most oil companies are members of the Chamber and American Petroleum Association, which recently sued the EPA opposing its clean power plan. Their money and reputation line up working to block regulations that would reduce GHG emissions. Continue Reading →
Women in California companies continue to make slight progress. More of California’s largest 400 public companies public companies than ever have women chief executive officers (CEOs), and fewer have no women in their C-suites and boardrooms. However, the annual University of California, Davis, study shows women still hold just one in eight of the senior executive and director positions in corporate California.
Overall, women hold 12.3% of the highest-paid executive positions and board seats in the state’s 400 largest public companies — a scant 0.75% point increase over last year, according to the UC Davis Study of California Women Business Leaders.
At that rate it will take fifty years for women in California companies to reach parity. I’ll be long dead. In the meantime, I’ll continue investing a disproportionate of my portfolio in companies with women at the top, betting such companies have better corporate governance and will outperform my other investments. Continue Reading →
Take Action: Bartlett Naylor of Public Citizen sent me the following draft sign-on comment letter to FASB/SEC regarding their concept release to redefine “materiality” from information that “could” be important to investors to information that “would” be considered important. If you agree with us that regulators shouldn’t be reducing the volume information that “could” be material, please contact Mr. Naylor at [email protected]. Let him know you want to join in the comment letter. Include your contact details and how you want to be referenced.
December 6, 2015
Mary Jo White/Chair
James Schnurr/Office of Chief Accountant
Securities and Exchange Commission Members
Financial Accounting Standards Board Continue Reading →
This session was a transition between #ICGN15 and #CIIFall2015 conferences in Boston. Deborah Goldberg, the Treasurer of Massachusetts, provided the opening remarks. She was followed by a panel discussing the priorities and challenges of pension fund chiefs. Please feel free to point out any corrections, counterpoints and additional points using the site’s comment feature.
Continue Reading →
Hain Celestial Group Inc (HAIN) manufactures, markets, distributes, and sells organic and natural products in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Europe. Hain Celestial is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is on November 19, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked. I also checked CalSTRS, since their votes don’t seem to be posted at ProxyDemocracy.org and I voted with the Board’s
recommendations 64% of the time. View Proxy Statement. Continue Reading →
ICCR’s Board of Directors announced that Josh Zinner will be assuming the role of ICCR’s new Chief Executive Officer, effective January 4th2016.
Josh Zinner comes to ICCR with 20 years’ experience as a non-profit leader, coalition-builder and policy advocate. For the past eight years Josh has co-directed the New Economy Project, an organization that works with community groups to promote economic justice – through policy advocacy, litigation, coalition building, shareholder action, community education, and research – and has been at the forefront both locally and nationally in the fight against discriminatory financial practices. Continue Reading →
Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) designs, manufactures, and sells Internet Protocol (IP) based networking products and services related to the communications and information technology industry worldwide. Cisco is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is on November 19, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of four funds when I checked. I voted with the Board’s recommendations 50% of the time. View Proxy Statement.
The Clorox Company (CLX) manufactures and markets consumer and professional products worldwide. The company operates through four segments: Cleaning, Household, Lifestyle, and International. Clorox is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is on November 18, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked. I voted with the Board’s recommendations 100% of the time. View Proxy Statement. Continue Reading →
Many readers refer to and rely on QuickScores issued by Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS). It is in our interest to have those scores calculated using the best available data. Issuers have until Friday, 11/13/2015, 8 pm ET to submit updates and corrections through the ISS verification process. New scores are expected to be released on 11/23/2015, and will then appear in ISS research reports available on profile pages at Yahoo! Finance and elsewhere.
The following is primarily based on a recent Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati alert (with similar advice coming from many law firms). I am in no way offering legal advice but am simply passing on information to help ensure ISS has the best available data possible. Continue Reading →
At the recent #AllInForImpact SRI Conference – on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing I presented a “Topic Table.” These are informal gatherings of up to 10 people during lunch. Topics are submitted prior to the conference by any registrant who wishes to lead a discussion on an issue related to sustainable, responsible, impact investing. Mine was on Proxy Access and Advocacy.
I started out with a Calvin and Hobbes cartoon depicting how many people see business today… run by narcissists, producing little of real value and looking to be subsidized. Continue Reading →
More of America’s largest publicly traded companies are bringing sunlight to their corporate expenditures on politics, the 2015 CPA-Zicklin Index of Political Disclosure and Accountability shows on the eve of a blockbuster election year for political spending.
For the first time, the 2015 CPA-Zicklin Index has been expanded to measure the transparency policies and practices of the entire S&P 500. The 2015 CPA-Zicklin Index reveals that: Continue Reading →
The Appleseed Fund, a sponsor of the recent #AllinForImpact SRI Conference, leverages its role as a shareholder advocate to encourage boards and management teams to become more transparent and responsible with regard to ESG matters. They believe investors can have significant influence on the companies they own through informal engagement, proxy voting and submitting shareholder resolutions. Continue Reading →
Leadership transitions are the ideal time to think about what it means to lead. What is the role of leadership in building the “just and sustainable corporate world” the ICCR community envisions in its mission statement? During an interactive panel on Oct. 1, 2015, five dynamic leaders explored the role of corporate responsibility and the capital markets through the lens of their own experiences as leaders in today’s marketplace. Continue Reading →
You are invited you to join us for the 2015 Millstein Governance Forum. This year’s Forum, the 10th annual hosted by the Millstein Center, will focus on The Board-Centric Model in the Array of Shareholders and will take place on Thursday, December 10, 2015 at Columbia University in New York. Continue Reading →
Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC (“Parametric”), a majority owned subsidiary of Eaton Vance Corp. (NYSE:EV) and a participant at the All In For Impact conference (#AllinForImpact) in Colorado Springs, announced the creation of two new proprietary responsible investing strategies, Parametric ESG Domestic and Parametric ESG International. Continue Reading →
Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. (BR) is a provider of investor communications and technology-driven solutions to banks, broker-dealers, mutual funds and corporate issuers. They are one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is on November 12, 2015. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked and voted. I voted with the Board’srecommendations 64% of the time. View Proxy Statement.
This the fifth part of my coverage of this year’s ICGN event in Boston. I haven’t taken the time to edit the prose to make complete well-flowing sentences. Still, I hope you find them of some value. Here we touch on the idea of a Stewardship code for the US and I captured a few remarks from DuPont’s former CEO, Ellen Pullman. Continue Reading →
Assessing Climate Change Risks is part four in my coverage of this year’s ICGN event in Boston. These posts haven’t been checked for accuracy and I haven’t taken the time to make complete well-flowing sentences. Still, I hope you find them of some value. Continue Reading →