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Newground Insights

News, Commentary & Resources

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Over 50,000 Sign Petition Opposing SEC's Effort to Silence Shareholder Voices

A few days after SEC Chair Jay Clayton introduced proposed rule changes that would drastically curtail the rights of investors to file shareholder proposals on important environmental, social, and governance (ESG) concerns, CREDO Action, the advocacy arm of CREDO Mobile, posted an online petition opposing the new rules. The petition garnered 50,461 supporters, by far the largest public statement of opposition to this SEC action from any group.

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Facebook: Shareholder Proposal to #RebootFacebook

Newground Social Investment co-filed a shareholder proposal to Facebook that calls on the company to address systemic operational issues that have compromised privacy, led to serious human rights abuses (including genocide and human trafficking), and allowed Russia and others to meddle in the elections of Britain, America, and other countries. The goal of the proposal is to reestablish the platform as a positive force for connecting people and for building peaceful, civil, and democratic societies around the world.

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Press Release: SEC’s Proposed Rule Changes Muzzle Shareholders and Shield CEOs From Accountability

The SEC voted today to consider sweeping changes to the regulations governing the shareholder proposal process which negatively impact small investors as well as proxy advisory services. The proposed changes to Rule 14a-8 include substantially more strict and complicated thresholds for filing, significantly higher resubmission requirements, serious free speech infringements on independent third-party proxy advisory services, and onerous restrictions on an investor’s essential agency right to seek assistance.

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Unfair Voting at Amazon

Amazon's proxy engages in Formula Swapping – it uses a favorable vote-counting formula for management's board election, but a more repressive formula to count shareholder proposals. This inconsistent treatment disproportionately benefits management while depressing the tally on shareholder items. This puts stockholders at risk, and reflects the faulty logic that a Company can divine voter intent.

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