Shareholder activism sounds so respectable, even noble. The phrase conjures images of good-corporate-governance folk fighting greedy or dysfunctional management in the company’s best interest. While shareholders can be disciplinarians who right the wrongs of abusive directors, many boardroom activists advance some of the most destructive short-term thinking in business today.
The Great Debate
from The Great Debate UK:
- Laurence Copeland is a professor of finance at Cardiff University Business School and a co-author of "Verdict on the Crash" published by the Institute of Economic Affairs. The opinions expressed are his own. -
Dan Primack is the editor of peHUB, a Thomson Reuters publication.
The New York State Pension Fund kickback scandal is making new headlines. The Wall Street Journal reported that Steven Rattner, the head of the Obama administratino's auto task force, was one of the executives involved with payments that are under scrutiny, citing a person familiar with the matter.
(Republished to clarify time period of data in fifth paragraph)
Patriotism, as Dr Johnson once observed, is the last refuge of a scoundrel. So when you hear words like “duty” drip from the lips of a senior executive at Goldman Sachs, you instinctively count the spoons.