Goldman Sachs 2023 Pay Equity is just one of several issues to be voted on before the annual meeting at 8:30 am on April 26, 2023, in Dallas. Vote AGAINST Michele Burns, Kimberley Harris, Kevin Johnson, Ellen Kullman, Lakshmi Mittal, Adebayo Ogunlesi, David Solomon, Exec Pay, Auditor, #7; FOR all other shareholder proposals, including #12 pay equity disclosure.
The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., a financial institution, provides a range of financial services for corporations, financial institutions, governments, and individuals worldwide. I voted with the Board’s recommendations 39% of the time. View Proxy Statement via SEC’s EDGAR system (look for DEF 14A). Read Warnings.
Goldman Sachs 2023: ISS Rating
The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.’s ISS Governance QualityScore as of April 1, 2023, is 9. The pillar scores are Audit: 10; Board: 6; Shareholder Rights: 6; Compensation: 8. Corporate governance scores courtesy of Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS). Scores indicate decile rank relative to index or region. A decile score of 1 indicates lower governance risk, while a 10 indicates higher governance risk.
Goldman Sachs 2023: How I Voted
|1A-1L – Election of Directors||FOR, EXCEPT|
1A) Michele Burns, 1C) Kimberley Harris, 1D) Kevin Johnson, 1E) Ellen Kullman, 1F) Lakshmi Mittal, 1G) Adebayo Ogunlesi, 1L) David Viniar
Michele Burns, Kimberley Harris, Kevin Johnson, Ellen Kullman, Lakshmi Mittal, Adebayo Ogunlesi, David Solomon
|2 – Advisory Vote to Approve Executive Compensation||AGAINST||AGAINST|
|3 – Advisory Vote on the Frequency of Future Advisory Votes on Executive Compensation||1 YEAR||1 YEAR|
|4 – Ratification of the Appointment of Independent Auditors||AGAINST||AGAINST|
|5 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding a Report on Lobbying||AGAINST||FOR|
|6 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding a Policy for an Independent Chair||FOR||FOR|
|7 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding Chinese Congruency of Certain ETFs||FOR||AGAINST|
|8 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding a Racial Equity Audit||FOR||FOR|
|9 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding a Policy to Phase Out Fossil Fuel-Related Lending & Underwriting Activities||AGAINST||FOR|
|10 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding Disclosure of 2030 Absolute Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals||FOR||FOR|
|11 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding a Climate Transition Report||FOR||FOR|
|12 – Shareholder Proposal Regarding Reporting on Pay Equity||FOR||FOR|
Goldman Sachs 2023 Votes Explained
Briefly, Egan-Jones recommended against several directors for being on the compensation committee (when they recommended against pay). I added a vote against the chair, who should be independent and is not. Goldman Sachs has had the same auditor for over 100 years. Maybe not so independent after working together for so long?
Re # 7, I frankly am not thrilled with most of what the right-learning National Legal and Policy Center files. Although China could be a real issue for Goldman, I’d rather see this delicate matter handled quietly for now. I support all the other shareholder proposals.
I had help with my voting from Egan-Jones, my own proxy voting policy through Iconikapp. and by briefly looking and some funds that announce their votes in advance.
Goldman Sachs 2023: My Pay Equity Disclosure Proposal
This proposal is from me, James McRitchie. The Goldman Sachs Group’s refusal to set a timeline for publishing unadjusted pay gap data is reflective of a lack of transparency and accountability to investors and employees.
Our Company’s opposition statement admits they “have heard from many shareholders that additional disclosure regarding our pay practices would be beneficial.” Therefore, they will begin reporting pay gaps next year, adjusted for factors such as employee roles, tenure, location, impact, etc.
Yes, that IS progress, but so far, Goldman Sachs has shown no willingness even to set a multi-year timeline for disclosing unadjusted median pay gaps. Only unadjusted median pay gaps tell us how our company assigns value to employees through the roles they inhabit and the pay they receive.
Do minorities and women hold as many high-paying jobs as white men? We won’t know because many pay gaps can be explained away with the excuse that minorities and women aren’t working at the same level.
The unadjusted median pay gap is the only benchmark to measure if the real pay gaps are shrinking.
Goldman’s refusal to commit to eventually publishing unadjusted pay gap data reflects badly on our company’s reputation. Let’s change that.
Vote FOR Proposal 12. Better reporting will lead Goldman to make better use of all its human resources. That will profit employees and shareholders alike. (see filing)
In looking up a few funds in our Shareowner Action Handbook, I see several funds have reported their votes. For example, Norges, NYC Pensions, and Trillium all voted in favor of our pay equity disclosure proposal.
Goldman Sachs 2023: Mark Your Calendar
Shareholders who, in accordance with the SEC’s Rule 14a-8,wish to present proposals for inclusion in the proxy materials to be distributed by us in connection with our 2024 Annual Meeting of Shareholders must submit their proposals to John F.W. Rogers, Secretary to the Board of Directors, via email email@example.com or by mail at The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., 200 West Street, New York, New York 10282. Proposals must be received on or before Saturday, November 18, 2023. Please ensure that receipt of your proposal is confirmed. As the rules of the SEC make clear, however, simply submitting a proposal does not guarantee its inclusion.
Our proposal won over 31% of the vote this year.
Goldman Sachs settled a lawsuit on systematic discrimination against thousands of female employees for $215M and an agreement to change some of the Company’s practices, including a commitment to “pay-equity studies.” https://www.nytimes.com/2023/05/09/business/dealbook/goldman-sachs-discrimination-lawsuit.html
The studies agreed upon are limited to comparing “substantially similar employees,” so there will probably be no analysis of unadjusted median pay gaps or anything that gets to who is promoted. I expect to file a similar proposal for next year’s meeting if there is no progress on those measures, which we view as critical to long-term progress.