Tag Archives | CalPERS

CalPERS Launches Search for Chief Investment Officer

After the death of straight shooter Joe Dear (Joseph A. Dear: June 7, 1951 to February 26, 2014), the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) has launched a search. Big shoes to fill. They seek an experienced investment professional for the role of Chief Investment Officer (CIO) to lead and manage its 400-plus person Investment […]

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Apple Inc. (AAPL): How I Voted – Proxy Score 89

Apple Inc. (NASD:AAPL) is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 2/28/2014. ProxyDemocracy.org was down for maintenance when I checked and voted on 2/19/2014, so no voting advice there. I checked a few other sources such as CalPERS, Florida SBA and OTPP but none had disclosed their votes on their sites as of yesterday. I voted […]

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CalPERS Governance: Election Reforms

Testimony of James McRitchie Finance & Administration Committee, Agenda Item 6b, February 18, 2014 (Staff Report) As the Harold Stassen of CalPERS, having run for the Board more times unsuccessfully than anyone else, I have some experience with the governing rules and favor the actions recommended by staff but with additional improvements to recommendation 2, CEO […]

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Take Action: Join Nader's Penny Brigade

Some have argued that Ralph Nader started socially responsible shareholder activism with Campaign GM, when the group filed shareholder proposals to expand GM’s board to include consumer advocates and empower shareholders to place their board nominees on GM’s proxy ballot (proxy access).  According to a recent article in the WSJ, the longtime consumer advocate is now putting […]

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Job: General Counsel at CalPERS

CalPERS is still recruiting to fill its vacant General Counsel position.  This is an exciting opportunity for a visionary in the legal profession to play a key role in a preeminent public pension fund.  Under the direction of the Chief Executive Officer, the General Counsel supports CalPERS in the management of a global portfolio of […]

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CalPERS Launches Search for General Counsel

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) is seeking a visionary in the legal profession for the role of General Counsel to serve as a critical member of the organization’s Executive Team in support of CalPERS pension and health care programs. The General Counsel advises the Board of Administration, Chief Executive Officer and the organization […]

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Corporate Governance: the Focus for a New Type of Activist Investor

Guest post from Josh Black, Financial Journalist for Activist Insight Ltd., which “aims to provide the most comprehensive global information source on activist investment.” Traditional activists were essentially value investors, but that profile might be changing. Carl Icahn has long championed the interests of shareholders. Yet even many who had watched him for years were surprised by […]

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Good Reads in Corporate Governance: Redefining Materiality II

AccountAbility has released a comprehensive report examining the growing importance of non-financial factors on corporate performance, disclosure, and valuation. Redefining Materiality II by Marcy Murninghan was developed in response to accelerating acceptance that non-financial materiality is an influential factor in corporate valuation. As part of a new series of publications on materiality, the report describes the landscape of […]

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2013 Millstein Forum: Dual-Class Structures, Pro and Con

Sorry to be late and abbreviated in getting out my coverage of this great forum. Be sure to check out the Forum’s photo gallery, which contains many more and much better shots than what I took between notes and conversations. The second panel discussed the growing issue of dual-class stock structures. While there was considerable […]

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Corporate Governance: Stepping Back in Time

Five years ago in Corporate Governance Publisher’s Note: Yes, you’ll find many broken links. After 5, 10 and 15 years, the internet moves on. Many of the organization’s linked have since gone under. We’re just glad to still be here, offering our readers a sense of the history we have shared.  Since 2005, KLD has studied the […]

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Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN): Proxy Score 64

Amazon.com, Inc. ($AMZN) is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 5/23/2013. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of three funds when I checked on 5/16/2013.  I voted with management 64% of the time.  View Proxy Statement (high tech AMZN but no hyperlinked index). Warning: Be sure to vote each item on the proxy. Any items left […]

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My Notes from Ceres Conference 2013

Let’s just label these notes as “for entertainment purposes only.” Attending the conference was a real pleasure. Unfortunately, I was too busy catching up with people to take more than impressionistic notes at a few of the discussions. Prepare to be frightened about global climate change and our irresponsibly slow pace addressing the catastrophic consequences […]

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Wayback Machine: Five, Ten and Fifteen Years Ago in Corporate Governance

Five years ago in Corporate Governance Whole Foods Market Inc. (WFMI) says federal securities regulators are recommending that no action be taken against the grocery chain over anonymous postings on financial-news Web sites by its chief executive. Mackey’s postings, including many to CorpGov.net publisher James McRitchie, surfaced when they were included among a trove of […]

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Guns and Divestment

The California Constitution provides that the Legislature may, by statute, prohibit retirement board investments if in the public interest and providing the prohibition satisfies specified fiduciary standards. Current law prohibits the boards of CalPERS and CalSTRS from investing public employee retirement funds in a company with active business operations in Sudan and Iran, as specified. AB […]

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CalPERS: Passive Investing – Active Monitoring

Investment News reports that California CalPERS, the second biggest U.S. public pension fund, is weighing the idea of taking its massive $255 billion assets under management and moving to an all-passive portfolio. Should we care? Well, it would matter a lot for active managers who receive management fees from CalPERS, Josh Brown, who runs the popular financial […]

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Agency Capitalism: Corrective Measures (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of a post which started out reviewing the important thesis outlined in The Agency Costs of Agency Capitalism: Activist Investors and the Revaluation of Governance Rights by Ronald J. Gilson and Jeffrey N. Gordon (January 1, 2013). See Agency Capitalism: Corrective Measures Part 1 and Part 3. Current law encourages mindless indexing of portfolios and voting like lemmings […]

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Apple: How I Voted, Proxy Score – 46

Apple ($AAPL) is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 2/27/2013. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of five funds when I checked on 2/19/2012.  They listed the votes of six funds voting as of yesterday. I voted with management 46% of the time.  View Proxy Statement. I voted, despite David Einhorn’s attempt to get an […]

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CalPERS Seeks Global Governance Investment Officers

Job Announcement: As the nation’s largest public pension fund, managing assets of $240 billion as of November 13, 2012, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) is committed to a diverse work environment and culture centered on core values of quality, respect, integrity, openness, communication, balance, and accountability. We’re looking for talented, enthusiastic people who […]

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Controlled Companies Carry Negatives

A new study finds that controlled companies – particularly those with multiple classes of shares – generally underperform over the long term. As compared to companies with dispersed ownership, controlled companies experience more stock price volatility, increased material weakness in accounting controls, more related party transactions, and offer fewer rights to unaffiliated shareholders. The study […]

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CalPERS May Boycott Dual-Class IPOs

CalPERS is considering a policy of not investing in the initial public offerings (IPOs) of dual-class companies where shareowning is structured so that a minority will control the majority of the votes. From what I have seen, CalPERS has already opposed those that exist but this step would allow the retirement system to avoid purchasing shares […]

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Wal-Mart: How I Voted – Proxy Score 10%

Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) ($WMT) is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 6/1/2012. Voting ends 5/31 on Moxy Vote’s proxy voting platform, which had 8 recommendations “from good causes,” including 3 consolidations, when I checked and voted on 5/24. ProxyDemocracy.org had 4 funds voting.  I voted with management 10% of the time. (more…)

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Silicon Valley Exceptionalism

Hopefully, it can mostly be attributable to early stage growth but Fenwick & West’s Corporate Governance Practices and Trends: A Comparison of Large Public Companies and Silicon Valley Companies found significant differences between the (more…)

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Apple Improves Governance

The preliminary vote gave my “say on directors pay” less than 4%, so I guess putting that proposal up at the world’s largest most profitable company with so many happy shareowners may have been a mistake. However, I note that Apple cut the pay of a couple of directors from $1.2 million to about half […]

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Quiet Engagement Better Than "Name and Shame"

A corporate governance engagement analysis, conducted for CalPERS by the Wilshire investment consulting firm, shows private talks are more productive than the public scrutiny of a Focus List of firms that resist reforms. The study supports CalPERS move to abolish use of its “name-and-shame” (more…)

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CalPERS Dumps Mtn Top Removal Project

After pouring $200 million into vineyards across California, Oregon and Washington, CalPERS said this week that it is firing the firm that has been its investment partner and land manager. The investment has lost 40 percent of its value and was worth $122 million as of March 31, the latest figures available. The California Public Employees’ […]

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