Shareholder Rights

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  • #13393
    Mark Bentley
    Keymaster

    The table below show what services the major investment platforms offer clients for information and voting rights on their holdings.

    Platform Name: Can you ask the platform to notify you of upcoming general meetings for your shareholdings, or does the platform do this anyway? Is there a charge for this service? Can you ask the platform to automatically send you electronic copies of annual and interim reports, and circulars for your shareholdings? Is there a charge for this service? Can you ask the platform to automatically send you paper copies of annual and interim reports, and circulars for your shareholdings? Is there a charge for this service? Can you instruct the platform to vote on resolutions put to general meetings on your behalf? Is there a charge for this service? If voting is offered, is this through a simple electronic form, or is it more cumbersome to do so, e.g. by having to send a message with detailed voting instructions? Will the platform issue letters of representation so that you can attend, speak and vote at general meetings? Does the platform provide a standard electronic mechanism for requesting LoRs, or do specific messages have to be sent? Is there a charge for providing a LoR?
    AJ Bell YouInvest no – sometimes   notified no no na no na yes no Unless   you wish to vote for all resolutions in the same manner, a message has to be   sent. yes a   message must be sent no
    Hargreaves Lansdown no na no no no no yes no send an email -but it works   fine. And for capital raises etc, there is a specific form to be filled out   with detailed explanation Yes, and they are (now) quite   efficient about it in the email system, it is one   of the dropdown choices no charge
    HSBC no na no na no na Don’t know Don’t know no no na
    IG stockbrokers (direct client) no na no na no na yes,   with difficulty no message   and begging yes no £100
    i-dealing no na no na no na no na no no na
    Interactive Brokers no na no na no na no na no no na
    Interactive Investors yes no yes no no no yes no electronic   form yes yes,   standard mechanism no
    Natwest Stockbrokers no na no na no na by   special request only possibly special   request yes no   – special request possibly
    The Share Centre not reliably no no na yes no yes no electronic   form yes yes   – but may not cover AIM companies no
    #13395
    Mike Dennis
    Participant

    Thanks Mark
    The table looks good but the text is hard to read on the headers. Is it poss to change the contrast by lightening the background or making the text white rather than black.
    Thanks
    Mike

    #13399
    Mark Bentley
    Keymaster

    Hi Mike,

    I’ve improved the backgrouond colour for the header row.

    Best,
    Mark

    #15622
    Patrick Childs
    Participant

    Thanks Mark, this table is brilliant.

    This is Patrick from Leicester Square Signet. I have been with Share Centre. They have been very good at getting the registrars to send paper copies of annual reports etc. I even recently received the massive offer document for Shaftesbury’s open offer.
    As you know they are being taken over by Interactive. The information I received was that interactive do not provide this service, although your table indicates that they do. Do you have any updated information?

    I will try to get them on the telephone, although this is increasingly difficult. Paper copies of contract notes would be good, although I dont’ think they do this either. You get an email after about 48 hours telling you to log in to the website to download your contract note. To me that is very “clunky”. I would like to be looked after with a more automatic follow up.

    Finally do you know the details of what section of the Companies Act the information rights are set out in?

    #15719
    Mark Bentley
    Keymaster

    Hi Patrick,

    ii used to provide this service, but sadly it appears that they no longer do. I will update the table accordingly.

    Part 9 of the Companies Act contains the provisions that enable (but do not require) nominee operators to nominate persons to receive information rights.

    See this article for the latest on ShareSoc’s efforts to address these issues.

    Best,
    Mark


    #15729
    Patrick Childs
    Participant

    Mark
    Many thanks for getting back to me on the Reports issue.

    Actually I was told on Friday that they do still offer this service. I had to speak to a person while trying to deal in a foreign stock and he told me how to opt into paper communications. In fact he said that he had changed the option for me, also including paper contract notes.
    I am waiting to see if I receive any material following the stated change. . . .
    Unfortunately I cannot remember where on the website he directed me to to achieve this.

    Patrick


    #17021
    Cliff Weight
    Participant

    The Telegraph wrote a useful article about AGMs and voting. see https://www.telegraph.co.uk/investing/shares/use-broker-hold-investments-account/

    It was headed

    How to use your broker to hold your investments to account

    But the real story was in the byline – Stockbrokers require investors to jump through lots of hoops to register their vote.

    It also explained the problems and quoted ShareSoc:

    However, new investors might not know that owning company shares comes with part ownership of a company – and with it the right to vote on issues at their annual general meetings, or AGMs. 

    Investors can make their voice heard on far-ranging topics, from how much company leadership gets paid, to whether it pays a dividend or donates to a political party.    

    But fewer than 1pc of people actually take up their votes, according to ShareSoc, a non-profit organisation which represents the interests of shareholders in Britain.

    Cliff Weight, of ShareSoc, said this was due to stockbrokers making it challenging for DIY investors to use their vote. Each broker has a different process for submitting votes.

    The Telegraph article also included its guide on how to navigate the different broker processes.

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