As part of their joint work to represent individual shareholders' interests, the ShareSoc and UKSA policy teams continue to press government to improve information transparency for investors. With that aim in mind, UKSA's Policy Director Peter Parry has written to our relevant contact at BEIS, as follows, concerning the issue of auditor resignations:
Action following resignation of auditors
The Policy teams at UKSA and ShareSoc have been having further thoughts about the action that should be taken by companies when auditors resign the ...
On 5 August 2019, ShareSoc formally launched a new Campaign, The Albion Venture Capital VCT Campaign see https://www.sharesoc.org/campaigns/albion-vct-campaign/ .
ShareSoc, the UK Individual Shareholders Society, is very concerned by proposed changes to the Albion Venture Capital VCT (AAVC) fees charged by its investment manager Albion Capital. We have therefore launched a campaign, seeking members to vote against resolutions 2, 3, 4, 7 and 8 at the Albion Venture Capital AGM and the GM resolution on 21 August 2019. In addition, we seek ...
Press release 111 - It is time for a negotiated settlement for European investors:
VW has been dragging its feet over European claims
The company has paid out 30 billion EUR in the US
This approach is unfair and unjust to European investors
Delaying tactics have not worked; legal pressure is mounting
The two leading investor protection associations call for a negotiated settlement
The World Federation of Investors and BETTER FINANCE, the two leading investor protection associations, have ...
ShareSoc, the UK Individual Shareholders Society, has a campaign called the ShareSoc VCT Investors Group who campaign against egregious fees and long tenure NEDs and is supportive of the Ventus shareholder resolutions submitted by the Requisitioners.
Some of the background is in my 18 June blog https://www.sharesoc.org/blog/vcts/vct-investor-group-ventus-ventus-2-vct-shareholder-resolutions/
We welcome the changes recently announced and we are glad that the Boards have responded to shareholder concerns and have engaged with ShareSoc.
ShareSoc’s recommendations for the Ventus and Ventus 2 AGMs which are being held ...
At the 2018 Royal Mail AGM, over 70% of shareholders voted against the remuneration report. Following extensive consultation, the Royal Mail have developed a new remuneration policy. As part of the consultation they consulted with the UK Shareholders' Association and ShareSoc members. On balance we recommend members to vote for the new remuneration policy and the remuneration report at the upcoming AGM, which is (sadly) inconveniently located in Exeter.
Below is the content of a letter we have written to Royal Mail:
In a joint response from UKSA and ShareSoc on behalf of individual investors, to the FCA CP19/12 Consultation on Investment Platforms Market Study Remedies, we said:
As noted in para 1.6 of CP19/12, the consultation paper will also be of interest to representative industry bodies and consumer groups. Individual consumers may also find it of interest, and their feedback is welcome.We represent “consumers”, although we prefer the term ‘investors’.
To inform our response, ShareSoc undertook a survey of our members in April-May 2019 ...
Press release 110 - The Law Commission begins review of intermediated securities system
UKSA-ShareSoc welcome the commencement of the Law Commission review of the intermediated securities system.
Share Soc Director Cliff Weight said "12 million UK investors should be pleased that this review will look at reforms needed to ensure legal redress is available when needed. They will also be pleased that the law regarding the rights and protections of investors will be reviewed. This will help ensure better transparency for investors and accountability ...
UKSA-ShareSoc submitted a joint response to the Brydon REVIEW INTO THE QUALITY AND EFFECTIVENESS OF AUDIT
We said a fresh approach was needed.
Many of the questions in the Review overtly or implicitly prompt debate about how the external audit can be made more robust and more relevant in future. Underlying this is a requirement to find ways of making auditors more accountable to those they are meant to be serving – namely the shareholders. Our view is that this cannot be achieved ...
In a detailed joint ShareSoc-UKSA 12-page Response to BEIS on the FRC Kingman proposals, we said we support the general thrust of the Kingman proposals. Kingman is proposing a new authority to replace the FRC.
We also made some more general points:
Sound financial reporting is a basic prerequisite for good stewardship. However, no matter how good the financial reporting is, if a significant proportion of investors are disenfranchised and unable to make their voice heard, many of the benefits of better financial reporting will ...
In January 2019, the FCA and FRC issued a joint discussion paper DP19/1 Building a regulatory framework for effective stewardship.
On 15 April 2019, we made a joint response from UKSA and ShareSoc on behalf of individual investors. In our response we make the following key points:
Investor stewardship must not let boards off the hook for their own stewardship. The Stewardship Code should be renamed the Investor Stewardship Code to better reflect what investors do and to better acknowledge the role of ...