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World’s Largest Asset Managers Meet to Improve Governance

Feb 8, 2016 6:30 PM ET

World’s Largest Asset Managers Meet to Improve Governance

Tired of being politicized piñatas in a campaign season of widespread bank bashing, the world’s largest asset managers have held summit meetings to discuss how to improve public company governance. The goal is to produce a new, collective statement of best practices that would change the relationship between U.S. companies and investors for the better. That relationship is currently marked by increasing shareholder activism over issues of transparency, driven by an ongoing debate about whether companies are too focused on short-term profits at the expense of long-term investment.

Specific governance subjects discussed at the meetings included the role of board directors, executive compensation, board tenure, and shareholder rights. The meetings were convened by JP Morgan Chase’s CEO and Chairman Jamie Dimon and Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffet, and included the heads of BlackRock, Fidelity, Vanguard, Capital Group, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, and ValueAct. With that lineup of financial firepower, the odds are good that new, progressive governance guidance could be issued sometime this year.

I’m John Howell for 3BL Media.

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