Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.
search  
 
Subscribe   Subscribe   MI on Facebook Find us on Twitter Find us on Instagram      
 
 
   
 
     
 

Wall Street Journal

 

The Sunshine of Disclosure And Some Intimidation, Too

October 29, 2013

By James R. Copland

Jonathan Macey is right that shareholders and investors should "ignore" the widely hyped CPA-Zicklin Index, which is methodologically flawed and inconsistent year over year. Fortunately, shareholders have been getting this message. Not only have 82% of shareholders in Fortune 250 companies voted against political-spending-related shareholder proposals in the last two years, but between 75% and 77% have rejected the CPA’s own "model shareholder proposal" for political-spending disclosure. No such proposal has received majority support over board opposition at a large American company.

Those shareholders voting in favor of the CPA’s proposal are largely labor-affiliated pension funds and "social investing" funds, whose interests depart from the average diversified investor’s, or institutional investors blindly following the recommendations of proxy advisers like Institutional Shareholder Services, which receives significant revenues from those same special-interest investors and generally backs many more "social policy" shareholder proposals than the average investor.

Bruce Freed, the former Democratic congressional staffer who heads the CPA, regularly "reports" inflated shareholder support for his proposals by ignoring institutional investors’ abstention votes, contrary to corporate bylaws, and he attempts to create bandwagon effects by listing companies that offer certain disclosures (without clarifying that many such companies don’t disclose what Mr. Freed is asking from others). Rather than getting on that illusory bandwagon, corporate leaders should listen to the vast majority of their shareholders and preserve their important ability to play an active role in the political process.

Original Source: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304799404579153543466917788

 

 
PRINTER FRIENDLY
 
LATEST FROM OUR SCHOLARS

5 Reasons Janet Yellen Shouldn’t Focus On Income Inequality
Diana Furchtgott-Roth, 10-20-14

Why The Comptroller Race Matters
Nicole Gelinas, 10-20-14

Obama Should Have Picked “Ebola Czar” With Public-Health Experience
Paul Howard, 10-18-14

Success Of Parent Trigger Is Unclear­—Just As Foes Want
Ben Boychuk, 10-18-14

On Obamacare's Second Birthday, Whither The HSA?
Paul Howard, 10-16-14

You Can Repeal Obamacare And Keep Kentucky's Insurance Exchange
Avik Roy, 10-15-14

Are Private Exchanges The Future Of Health Insurance?
Yevgeniy Feyman, 10-15-14

This Nobel Prize-Worthy Economist Figured Out How To Destroy Terrorism
Diana Furchtgott-Roth, 10-15-14

 
 
 

The Manhattan Institute, a 501(c)(3), is a think tank whose mission is to develop and disseminate new ideas
that foster greater economic choice and individual responsibility.

Copyright © 2014 Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, Inc. All rights reserved.

52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10017
phone (212) 599-7000 / fax (212) 599-3494