Topic: Proxy Advisory

SEC Adopts Rules for Proxy Voting Advisory Firms, Issues Supplemental Guidance for Investment Advisors

On July 22, 2020, the SEC adopted final rules on the application of its proxy solicitation rules to proxy voting advisors. (See our November 2019 blog post on the proposed rules here.) Among other things, the new rules will, for practical purposes, require these proxy advisory firms – most notably Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis – to make their voting recommendations for any public company’s annual meeting of shareholders available to that company at or before the time the recommendations become available to the proxy advisory firm’s institutional investor clients, so long as the public company files its proxy statement at least 40 days before the meeting.

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ISS and Glass Lewis Announce Flexibility In Corporate Governance Policies During COVID-19 Crisis

ISS and Glass Lewis have issued guidance on their corporate governance voting policies that ‎adds flexibility to reflect the realities of the impact of the COVID-19 crisis and the challenges in ‎responding to it. Public companies will want to consider this guidance since many institutional ‎investors are influenced in their voting by the positions taken by these leading proxy advisory ‎firms.‎

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Proxy Voting and Voting Advice: SEC Provides Guidance for Investment Advisers and Proxy Advisory Firms

On August 21, 2019, the SEC provided guidance (available here) to investment advisers, such as fund managers, regarding their proxy voting responsibilities. The SEC also concurrently issued an interpretative release (available here) regarding the applicability of the SEC’s proxy rules to proxy voting advice provided by proxy advisory firms, such as ISS and Glass Lewis.

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