Investor Forum - a secret Society?

Reading the the Investor Forum intervened in the Barclays - Branson battle I tried to find a copy of its letter on the website - but no luck. So one has to ask with what authority the IF takes sides, and why is it not willing to share its opinions or insights with the wider public.
City Forum intervenes in Barclays Battle

Overpaid CEO's are lacking Modesty and Decency

Given the astronomical pay that CEO's and their carefully selected board members (and they all belong to the same Club) award themselves one can only presume that the old fashioned habits of Modesty and Decency have given way to unbridled greed. These pay rises are not simply the result of misconceived economic and business theories but also the reflection of a general decline in moral standards.

What do real end investors want from Proxy Advisors?

A recent survey found that real end investors do not want more political and social activism! The survey also highlights the lack of influence retail investors have in the corporate governance debate. And it should also be mentioned that while 30% of listed shares in the USA are directly owned by the Great Unwashed Public, the remaining 70% are also owned by individuals - albeit via financial intermediaries in all forms and shapes.
Proxy Advisors: What Do (Real) Retail Investors Think?

CEO Pay - how much is too much?

$65 million for Disney's Bob Iger is insane says Disney heiress. And many - if not most people - would tend to agree. But in the heated discussion about CEO pay one question has not been answered: what is the correct level of CEO pay, and how should it be set?
Disney heiress calls Bob Iger's $65 mio pay insane 

The Real Problem with the Carried Interest Tax

Another broadside from a supporter of the status quo. But one aspect is forgotten (on purpose?) in this ongoing saga. For arguments sake let us agree that it is beneficial and fair to give entrepreneurs and investors a lower tax rate on capital gains. But the promoters behind Private Equity are not always putting sufficient funds of their own into the businesses they finance. Taxable income could easily be converted into capital gains if they award themselves a sort of founder's shares at artificially low prices - and voila, when the company/asset is sold they can book a capital gain that is taxed at a much reduced rate. Given the opaque nature of Private Equity one has to assume that this practice is quite prevalent in the industry. In addition, basing buy-out vehicles in offshore tax havens allows even more manipulation of tax levels. So while most of the money managed by 'Private' Equity ultimately comes (via financial intermediaries) from the Public the tax affairs of the promoters are the one aspect that is really private. Maybe a small part of all the noise and energy spent on reforming pay in the listed company sector would be much better addressed to shed more light on the pay practices in the Private Equity business.
Hiking the tax on carried interest capital gains is a lose, lose, lose

What purpose do Proxy Advisers serve?

One of the large Proxy Advisers seems to be more than happy to sign off on the compensation of Credit Suisse CEO Thiam. And many institutional investors are similarly content with his pay. But where does that leave the ordinary investor - the great majority is not holding CS shares directly but invests their savings via intermediaries who are really fiduciaries. But how do they insure that their investor's best interests are represented? This is the great deficiency in all the discussions about corporate governance - the real participants have no voice!

Shrinking Universe of Listed Companies - that's why!

No wonder that the universe of listed companies is shrinking. It is much too easy to gain control of companies and take them off the public markets. A tiny number of votes above the 50% threshold should not be allowed to force the remaining shareholders out of their holdings. No wonder that stakeholders are disregarded and sacrificed on the mantra of simplistic corporate constitutions.
Roche fails to get control of Spark