Say-on-Pay in the UK and Australia – and now in the US?

The post below comes to us from Peter Moon of Universities Superannuation Scheme, Phil Spathis of the Australia Council of Super Investors, and Keith Johnson of Reinhart Institutional Investor Services.

Verizon, Par Pharmaceutical and Aflac became the first US companies over the last year to adopt policies requiring an advisory vote of shareholders on company executive compensation practices. A network of over 70 institutional and individual investors lead by AFSCME and Walden Asset Management announced in January that adoption of this ‘say on pay’ policy is expected to be put on proxies at more than 90 US companies this year. With majority shareholder votes having been cast for similar resolutions at seven companies during 2007, say on pay will be one of the hottest issues in the upcoming US proxy season. In their article, Global Investors Laud Shareholder Votes on Executive Compensation, Peter Moon from the $65 billion Universities Superannuation Scheme pension fund in Britain, Phil Spathis from the $200 billion Australia Council of Super Investors and Keith Johnson from the University of Wisconsin Law School’s International Corporate Governance Initiative describe the impact that say on pay has had in other markets and discuss the benefits it could produce for both companies and shareholders in the United States.

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