AMP ups protest votes
Fund manager AMP Capital has increased the number of executive remuneration protest votes by 25 per cent over the last year, but has announced it believes it will not likely cause board spills under the two-strikes rule.
AMP Capital has voted against 40 per cent of remuneration reports this finacial year, up from 25 per cent in the first half of last year.
“AMP Capital has long been a supporter of companies having a transparent remuneration policy that is aligned with shareholder interests, thereby addressing any concerns before the need for a spill motion. We continue to encourage companies to focus on good disclosure and our preferred approach is to engage with those companies where we have concerns well before the AGM,” AMP Capital’s Head of Sustainable Funds Dr Ian Woods said.
Dr Woods said while the 25 per cent threshold may have been set too low it is unlikely entire boards will be removed over remuneration concerns.
AMP Capital found several companies in recent years with negative votes had subsequently received endorsement after engaging with shareholders to improve their remuneration structures.
The announcement comes after a study of the top 100 listed Australian companies has shown that the average wage of CEO’s has doubled in a space of a decade.
The report released by the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors finds (ACSI) that the average CEO’s total pay in 2010 was $4.9 million, following a steady period of upwards tracking.