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ShareSoc Blog

This blog gives you the latest topical news plus some informal comments on them from ShareSoc’s directors and other contributors. These are the personal comments of the authors and not necessarily the considered views of ShareSoc. The writers may hold shares in the companies mentioned. You can add your own comments on the blog posts, but note that ShareSoc reserves the right to remove or edit comments where they are inappropriate or defamatory.

There is more news given in the News page of our web site and more analysis of news is provided in our monthly newsletter for members – see the Newsletters page.

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How Wealthy Americans Pay No Tax

This article expresses the personal views of its author, not necessarily those of ShareSoc. There was another article in the Financial Times today covering “How the wealthiest Americans get away with paying no tax”. The item was based on a report by ProPublica which suggested that America’s richest billionaires paid virtually no taxes on hundreds of billions of dollars of added wealth over the past decade. They only paid 3.4% of the increase in taxes. The report is based on leaked IRS ...

Policy and Campaigns – Progress Update 14 June 2021

ShareSoc News Item by Director Cliff Weight In May and early June, we worked on: Woodford Campaign: Leigh Day received their response from Clifford Chance to their LBA (Letter Before Action). It looks like the case will go to court but it could take 3 more years. Leigh Day remain the only claim with insurance and funding in place. Harcus Parker have funding but do not have ATE insurance. RGL have neither insurance nor funding (other than funding for an initial ...

ShareSoc Patron Lord Lee Parliamentary Question about Bacanora take-over

The background is that ShareSoc was approached by the Bacanora Lithium Shareholder Action Group which is being run by Dee Patel who asked for ShareSoc’s assistance. We have helped them in explaining some key issues in how to run a campaign, how to obtain the shareholder register, problems with voting nominee shares, etc. We also thought whether a takeover would be in the UK public interest issue. We drew this to the attention of ShareSoc Patron Lord Lee, who has now tabled ...

Activists set their sights on underperforming AIM boards

ShareSoc Member Barry Gamble has contributed this article. A version of this first appeared in Board Agenda magazine. Although not exactly an everyday event, it is anything but rare these days for boards to find themselves under attack from activist shareholders. Although not exactly an everyday event, it is anything but rare these days for boards to find themselves under attack from activist shareholders. Following a period of corporate underperformance which becomes reflected in a weak or falling share price, shareholders may decide to ...

Bacanora “offer” by Ganfeng

By Cliff Weight. Please note these are my personal views and do not necessarily represent ShareSoc's views. I have never owned BCN shares, but am considering buying. Bacanora is subject to a possible offer from Chinese firm Ganfeng at 67.5p. The Takeover panel have issued a put up or shut up notice. A shareholder action group has been formed, with 400 investors who collectively own 7% of the shares. To join click here https://savebacanora.com/blog/ They also have an active WhatsApp group. The background ...

Scottish Investment Trust Reviewing Management Arrangements

I wrote about the Scottish Investment Trust (SCIN) back in February and commented negatively on its underperformance in recent years. Their investment style has been based on a contrarian approach, i.e. picking cheap stocks that look undervalued but which might recover. The article included this comment: “It would appear that they adopted the new investment style five years ago which might be identified as when under-performance took off. If an investment strategy does not work, how long should you persist with ...

Daily Mail, 2 June 2021, Bacanora takeover “offer” by Chinese company Ganfeng

https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-9641119/Backlash-sale-lithium-Chinese-predator.html  reports that: Cliff Weight, director of shareholders champion ShareSoc, said: 'When foreign joint ventures are listed on the London Stock Exchange, it is very difficult for the rights of minority shareholders to be protected. 'Companies such as Bacanora need to be much more transparent, so it is easier for investors to understand the options and warrants that JV (joint venture) partners have. It looks like the Chinese are buying lithium assets on the cheap.' .

Buying, Selling and Voting US shares

by Cliff Weight, Director ShareSoc. The Gamestop upcoming AGM votes have highlighted the differences in the platforms. Some still do not allow you to buy US shares. Notably Interactive and eToro will allow voting of Gamestop shares. I was sent the information below by a journalist, which looks right, but I cannot guarantee it is so. These things often change. I understand that Hargreaves are looking at making voting easier and considering using Broadridge. That would definitely be a great step in the right direction. Platform Access to US ...

Investment Trust Discount Reduction – The SEC example

by ShareSoc Director Cliff Weight. These are my views and not necessarily those of ShareSoc. Readers may recall my blog in Oct 2020 about investment trusts discounts and what to do about them https://www.sharesoc.org/blog/collective-investments/investment-trust-discounts-what-to-do-about-them-and-sec-example/ On Friday 28 May 2021,  SEC announced their new plan to help reduce their discount, https://www.londonstockexchange.com/news-article/SEC/contingent-tender-offers/14995537 : 2022 Contingent Tender The Board has determined to put in place a contingent tender offer in 2022, should the ordinary shares trade at a wider than average discount of 8 per cent. over the ...

Capital Gains Tax Review – Is It Simplification, or Is There a Hidden Agenda?

The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) have published a second report on Capital Gains Tax covering practical, administrative and technical issues. They give a number of recommendations to the Government and I cover those that may affect individual investors below (at least the few who actually pay capital gains tax) and add a few comments: HMRC should integrate the different ways of reporting and paying Capital Gains Tax into the Single Customer Account, making it a central hub for reporting and ...
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