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Institutional Investors and Proxy Voting on Compensation Plans: The Impact of the 2003 Mutual Fund Voting Disclosure Regulation

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  • Martijn Cremers
  • Roberta Romano

Abstract

This paper examines the impact on shareholder voting of the mutual fund voting disclosure regulation adopted by the SEC in 2003, using a paired sample of management proposals on executive equity incentive compensation plans submitted before and after the rule change. While voting support for management has decreased over time, we find no evidence that mutual funds' support for management declined after the rule change, as expected by advocates of disclosure. In fact, we find evidence of increased support for management by mutual funds after the change. There is some evidence that firms sponsoring such proposals both before and after the rule change differ from those sponsoring a proposal only before the change. For example, firms are more likely to sponsor a proposal both before and after the rule change if they have higher mutual fund ownership. Such endogeneity could partly explain our findings of increased support after the rule.

Suggested Citation

  • Martijn Cremers & Roberta Romano, 2009. "Institutional Investors and Proxy Voting on Compensation Plans: The Impact of the 2003 Mutual Fund Voting Disclosure Regulation," NBER Working Papers 15449, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15449
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Paul Gompers & Joy Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2003. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(1), pages 107-156.
    2. Yermack, David, 1996. "Higher market valuation of companies with a small board of directors," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 185-211, February.
    3. Davis, Gerald F. & Kim, E. Han, 2007. "Business ties and proxy voting by mutual funds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 552-570, August.
    4. Brown, Lawrence D. & Caylor, Marcus L., 2006. "Corporate governance and firm valuation," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 409-434.
    5. Gillan, Stuart L. & Starks, Laura T., 2000. "Corporate governance proposals and shareholder activism: the role of institutional investors," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 275-305, August.
    6. Thomas, Randall S. & Cotter, James F., 2007. "Shareholder proposals in the new millennium: Shareholder support, board response, and market reaction," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 368-391, June.
    7. Van Nuys, Karen, 1993. "Corporate governance through the proxy process*1: Evidence from the 1989 Honeywell proxy solicitation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 101-132, August.
    8. Bhagat, Sanjai & Bolton, Brian, 2008. "Corporate governance and firm performance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 257-273, June.
    9. Roberta Romano, 2001. "Less is More: Making Shareholder Activism a Valuable Mechanism of Corporate Governance," CeRP Working Papers 12, Center for Research on Pensions and Welfare Policies, Turin (Italy).
    10. Morgan, Angela & Poulsen, Annette & Wolf, Jack, 2006. "The evolution of shareholder voting for executive compensation schemes," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 715-737, September.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G2 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law

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