Wednesday, February 12, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Feb. 12, 2020)

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February 12, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Feb. 5, 2020)

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February 5, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Jan. 29, 2020)

January 29, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Jan. 22, 2020)

You might detect a theme.

January 22, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Sharfman on Exemptions from the Proxy Rules for Proxy Voting Advice

The following comes to us from Bernard S. Sharfman. It is a copy of the comment letter (without footnotes) that he recently sent to the SEC in support of the Amendments to Exemptions from the Proxy Rules for Proxy Voting Advice.  (The comment letter with footnotes can be found here.)  An introductory excerpt is followed, after the break, by the full letter. Please excuse any formatting errors generated by my poor copy-and-paste skills.

Part I of this letter will describe the collective action problem that is at the heart of shareholder voting. Part II will discuss the problems that this collective action causes for the voting recommendations of proxy advisors, including the creation of a resource constrained business environment. Part III discusses how proxy advisors deal with such a business environment. Part IV will discuss how the market for voting recommendations is an example of a market failure, requiring the SEC to pursue regulatory action to mitigate the harm caused by two significant negative externalities. Part V will discuss how the collective action problem of shareholder voting and the market failure impacts corporate governance. Part VI will discuss the value of the proposed amendments.

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January 15, 2020 in Corporate Governance, Current Affairs, Securities Regulation, Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (2)

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Jan. 8, 2020)

January 8, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Jan. 1, 2020)

January 1, 2020 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Dec. 25, 2019)

December 25, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Dec. 18, 2019)

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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Dec. 11, 2019)

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Wednesday, December 4, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Dec. 4, 2019)

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Wednesday, November 27, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Nov. 27, 2019)

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Wednesday, November 20, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Nov. 20, 2019)

November 20, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Nov. 13, 2019)

November 13, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Nov. 6, 2019)

November 6, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Oct. 30, 2019)

October 30, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Oct. 23, 2019)

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October 23, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Oct. 16, 2019)

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October 16, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

ICYMI: #corpgov Midweek Roundup (Oct. 9, 2019)

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October 9, 2019 in Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Defining Neoliberalism

I recently listened to an episode of EconTalk: “Dani Rodrik on Neoliberalism.” What follows is an excerpt from the show, wherein Rodrik defines neoliberalism:

What I mean by neoliberalism is really mostly a frame of mind that places the independent functioning of markets and private incentives and pricing incentives at the center of things. And I think in the process downgrades certain other values, like equity and the social contract, and certain restraints on private enterprise that are often required to achieve economic ends that are more compatible with social goals.

For whatever it’s worth, I’d change this definition as follows:

What I mean by neoliberalism is really mostly a frame of mind that places the independent functioning of markets and private incentives and pricing incentives at the center of things. And I think in the process [posits that] certain other values, like equity and the social contract, and certain restraints on private enterprise that are often required to achieve economic ends that are more compatible with social goals [are optimized via free markets compared to the historical failures of central planning].

Two other comments from the show that stuck out to me:

  • what both Foxconn and the Amazon cases show is that in fact there is so much uncertainty about markets and consumer preferences and technologies that, you know, before the ink is dry that there are things that contribute to the unraveling of these contracts
  • the cornerstone idea in microeconomics of utility--I mean, it's not measurable

On this last point, I was remined of a footnote in Volume I of the two-volume mini-treatise on the history of economic thought I co-authored with Robert Ashford (A History of Economic Thought: A Concise Treatise for Business, Law, and Public Policy):

To the extent utilitarianism poses a challenge to laissez-faire policies (i.e., rather than letting the market decide who gets what, we will study costs and benefits and allocate resources on that basis), economists favoring laissez-faire policies could be seen as hijacking utilitarian concepts by simply defining the results of free exchange as utility. In other words, while utilitarianism may be viewed as starting out as a challenge to laissez-faire ideology, once utility is equated with efficiency, and efficiency is generally associated with free-market transactions, then utilitarianism arguably becomes an asset to those espousing a laissez-faire ideology as opposed to a challenge.

October 2, 2019 in Books, Law and Economics, Stefan J. Padfield | Permalink | Comments (0)