The rules are changing for Proxy Voting Advice Businesses (PVAB), with approval by the SEC of new guidelines. The SEC’s final rule statement (published July 22, 2020) explains, “The Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) is adopting amendments to its rules governing proxy solicitations so that investors who use proxy voting advice receive more transparent, accurate, and complete information on which to make their voting decisions, without imposing undue costs or delays that could adversely affect the timely provision of proxy voting advice.
A provision of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the Paycheck Protection Program, PPP, has been a difference-maker for many U.S. companies. As of June 30, 2020, nearly 5 million small and medium-sized businesses received a much-needed cash infusion to help them make payroll during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. But where there is loan money available on payback forgiveness terms, there will inevitably be fraudsters attempting to game the system.
Proposed Department of Labor regulations on ESG investing (environmental, social, and governance) by retirement plans have drawn criticism from thirteen members of the US Senate. In a comment letter dated July 15, 2020, Independent party member, Senator Bernie Sanders, along with 12 Democratic Senators*, expressed “deep concern” over the DOL’s proposal “discouraging retirement plan fiduciaries from considering environmental, social, or governance (ESG) criteria in their investment decisions relating to ERISA-governed** retirement plans.”
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Corporations wishing to submit changes to their self-selected peer group for proxy disclosure have a short window that commences next Monday, July 6, 2020 at 9:00 AM EST. Institutional Shareholders Services (ISS) published the announcement last week.
ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance. Established to help define the environmental, social, and corporate accountability a company demonstrates and can document, the term ESG is often used to help prospective investors and current stockholders assess how a company aligns with the investor’s own principles of what is socially and environmentally ethical and acceptable. This report offers a timeline of how this direction has emerged and why it may presently represent one of the strongest drivers of U.S. economic direction both now and for the foreseeable future.
To Dads, Stepdads, and cherished Grandfathers, we wish you a safe, happy, and blessed Father’s Day 2020.
The Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020 (PPPFA) (i.e., the PPP loan extension) has been signed into law. After receiving U.S. Senate approval on June 3, 2020, the amendment to the Small Business Act and the CARES Act was finalized on June 5, with the signature of President Donald Trump. Updating the Paycheck Protection Program of the Small Business Administration, the PPPFA adds much needed flexibility to the timing and forgiveness options than was allowed by the original PPP Act.
Mandated ESG Disclosure (Environmental, Social, Governance*) by publicly held companies moves closer to reality. The Investor-as-Owner Subcommittee of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Investor Advisory Committee’s has voted 14-4 to approve a recommendation that urges the SEC to update the reporting requirements for public companies to include material, decision-useful environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors. The form the mandate …
COVID-19 has painted a crystal-clear picture of the critical value of human capital. And with this heightened awareness comes an accelerated pace for new human capital governance. But even before the global pandemic abruptly redefined just about everything, Attorney Mike Melbinger, a partner in the Chicago offices of Winston & Strawn, and others were already taking note of the developing sentiment that matters of human capital management should rest squarely on the shoulders of Compensation Committees.