Topic Results: Institutional investors

April 20, 2016

Japan discovers “good” corporate governance, American style

Not so long ago in an age when they were eating the lunch of American corporations, the Toyotas, Hitachis, Sonys, Canon, Hondas were governed in the worst possible way, at least according to the canons of American governance. Their boards were made up almost exclusively of corporate insiders, with no independent directors, no diversity, no […]

January 26, 2016

Hedge Fund Activism: A Guide for the Perplexed

The message of the Dow/DuPont merger and split up is simple: No firm is today “too big to target.” Activists can see the transaction as evidence that, even in the rare case where they lose a proxy fight (as they did at DuPont last year in a squeaker), the handwriting is still on the wall, […]

December 28, 2015

Who should pick corporate directors?

“Yvan Allaire and François Dauphin cogently analyze the costs and risks of proxy access, arguing that “Anyone believing that this process is likely to produce stronger boards in the long run needs to consider anew the calculus of current and prospective board members, the actions, likely dysfunctional, of people facing the humiliation (and economic loss) […]

December 8, 2015

Is 2015, Like 1985, an Inflection Year?

In an October 2015 post, I posed the question: Will a New Paradigm for Corporate Governance Bring Peace to the Thirty Years’ War? As we approach the end of 2015, I thought it would be useful to note some of the most cogent recent developments on which the need, and hope, for a new paradigm […]

November 30, 2015

Who Should Pick Board Members?

There is a frenzied rush for shareholders to get a new ‘right”, the right to put up their own nominees for board membership. Boards of directors, so goes a dominant opinion, are not to be fully trusted to pick the right kind of people as directors or to shift the membership swiftly as circumstances change. […]

November 9, 2015

The game of “activist” hedge funds: Cui bono?

This article aims to describe the contemporary objectives and tactics of activist hedge funds as well as the actions taken by the targeted companies as a result of their intervention. In this research, we explore the consequences of activism over time (impact on operational performance and share price returns) and compare these with a random sample of firms […]

November 4, 2015

IGOPP’s Policy Paper on Proxy Access by Shareholders to the Director Nomination Process

The board of the Institute for Governance (IGOPP) unanimously approved a Policy paper on Proxy Access by Shareholders to the Director Nomination Process. The prerogative to nominate the members of the board, which has historically been the sole responsibility of boards of directors, has now been challenged by institutional funds determined to acquire the right, […]

October 21, 2015

Who should pick board members?

Proxy access by shareholders raises numerous issues and potential adverse effects on governance The traditional view of corporate governance, anchored in law and customs, grants to the board of directors, once elected by shareholders, the responsibility of making all decisions in the interest of the corporation. That responsibility and accountability include, inter alia, appointing senior […]

October 9, 2015

The Case For And Against Activist Hedge Funds

Activist hedge funds can count on a number of supporters in academia and in the media rising up in defense of their actions. No doubt activist hedge funds have found their most persistent academic supporters in Professor Lucian Bebchuk of the Harvard Law School and his co-authors. In several papers, but most particularly in the […]

October 6, 2015

Can A New Paradigm For Corp Governance End A 30 Years War?

The decades-long conflict that is currently raging over short-termism and activist hedge funds strikes me as analogous to the Thirty Years’ War of the 17th Century, albeit fought with statistics (“empirical evidence”), op-eds and journal articles rather than cannon, pike and sword. I decided, after some thirty-six years in the front line of the army […]

October 5, 2015

Will a New Paradigm for Corporate Governance Bring Peace?

The decades-long conflict that is currently raging over short-termism and activist hedge funds strikes me as analogous to the Thirty Years’ War of the 17th Century, albeit fought with statistics (“empirical evidence”), op-eds and journal articles rather than cannon, pike and sword. I decided, after some thirty-six years in the front line of the army […]

July 1, 2015

Capturing long-term investors the Toyota way

In the on-going quest for innovative capital structures, Toyota has recently provided an interesting twist and tied in knots a number of institutional investors. Toyota believes that developing the next generation technologies will require massive investments over many years. It also believes that the current state of investment practices, the prevalence of roaming funds and […]

June 1, 2015

The Lessons of DuPont: Corporate Governance For Dummies

“Among practitioners, it is a customary cliché to say that all proxy contests—just like all trials—are unique and idiosyncratic. There is some truth to that easy generalization, but it also misses the forest for the trees. Some obvious truths stand out in the recent battle between Trian Fund Management and DuPont that will apply to […]

May 25, 2015

The case for and against activist hedge funds

A subset of so-called hedge funds, henceforth known as “activists”, has latched on the idea that many corporations are not managed or governed in a manner likely to maximize value for shareholders. With the capital they have obtained from pension funds and other institutional investors, they take a small position in the equity of publicly […]

April 11, 2015

Further Recognition of the Adverse Effects of Activist Hedge Funds

“Despite the continued support of attacks by activist hedge funds by the Chair of the SEC, and many “Chicago school” academics who continue to rely on discredited statistics, there is growing recognition by institutional investors and prominent “new school” economists of the threat to corporations and their shareholders and to the economy of these attacks […]

February 6, 2015

Engagement and Activism in the 2015 Proxy Season

“Yet companies, boards, and other investors should keep in mind that shareholder activism is often merely a tactic in a self-interested investment strategy. Shareholder activists such as hedge funds typically are pursuing short-term financial gain at the expense of long-term shareholders and stakeholders. These funds welcome the support of academics and theorists who argue that […]