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Aug 31, 2015

U.S. fund managers want less market intervention from Chinese regulators

BOSTON/NEW YORK, Aug 31 (Reuters) – U.S. fund managers want
less involvement from officials in China in the country’s
volatile stock markets, even if it means their portfolios take
hits in the short run.

China’s government has taken aggressive actions to stabilize
the country’s plummeting stock markets, imposing limits on the
sale of shares and channeling pension money into equities.
U.S.-based fund managers worry the steps are counterproductive
because they distort prices and hold back growth.

Aug 28, 2015

Investors still in the dark as cyber threat grows

LONDON/BOSTON (Reuters) – Investors are being poorly served by a haphazard approach from fund managers to the growing threat of cyber crime damaging the companies in which they invest, with a lack of clarity from the businesses themselves compounding the problem.

Banks have led the way in developing cyber defenses and some top fund managers have ramped up pressure on companies to do more, but the broader picture is less encouraging.

Aug 26, 2015

Funds snub Discovery director after rich CEO pay package

BOSTON (Reuters) – Investors in Discovery Communications Inc, including Manning & Napier Inc and BlackRock Inc, withheld support for a member of the company’s compensation committee, recent securities filings show, after the cable network operator gave its CEO the richest pay package in the S&P 500.

The filings also show how some large fund firms backed opposite sides in a major proxy fight at DuPont this spring, with BlackRock funds backing management and Fidelity funds like Magellan supporting dissident director candidates.

Aug 25, 2015

Three big US consumer companies have highest CEO pay gaps -study

BOSTON, Aug 25 (Reuters) – Popular consumer brands Discovery
Communications, Chipotle Mexican Grill and CVS
Health Corp pay their chief executive officers more than
a thousand times what they pay their typical worker, giving them
the biggest internal pay gaps among S&P 500 companies, according
to a study released on Tuesday.

The research from job-hunting website Glassdoor.com provides
an early glimpse of data that publicly traded companies will be
required by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to
report starting in 2017. On average, the
research showed that a CEO of an S&P 500 company makes 204 times
as much as the company’s median worker.

Aug 14, 2015

Hedge funds added Apple shares in second quarter, filings show

BOSTON (Reuters) – Top U.S. hedge funds added shares of Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) in the second quarter, even as shares of the iPhone maker were flat during the period.

Filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission released on Friday showed Philippe Laffont’s Coatue Management added about 860,000 shares of the iPhone maker during the three months ended June 30, giving it 8.5 million Apple shares in all.

Aug 13, 2015

Investors eye gaming stocks beaten-down by China headwinds

BOSTON (Reuters) – Shares of U.S. gaming companies operating in Macau have tumbled on worries over China but some investors now see them as a buying opportunity, despite a slowing Chinese economy and volatile stock market.

Shares in Wynn Resorts Ltd have lost over half their value since last year and those of Las Vegas Sands Corp are down nearly 40 percent from their 2014 high. Beijing’s currency devaluations have put further pressure on these companies which run gaming resorts on the Macau Peninsula across the Pearl River delta from Hong Kong.

Aug 11, 2015

China slowdown has some U.S. investors moving to consumer stocks

NEW YORK/BOSTON (Reuters) – The slowdown in the Chinese economy, which prompted the Chinese government to devalue the yuan currency on Tuesday, has already hammered the shares of U.S. industrial companies.

Yet some contrarian U.S. fund managers say there is still room to prosper by focusing on U.S. companies that target Chinese consumers. They say consumers who have benefited from the country’s expansion over the last decade show few signs of curtailing spending on products like high-end leather bags, cruise ship vacations and Starbucks coffee.

Jul 20, 2015

U.S. fund industry weighs proposed Clinton tax increase

NEW YORK, July 20 (Reuters) – Fund companies and brokerage
firms should be able to weather a proposal by Democratic U.S.
presidential candidate Hillary Clinton that would increase
capital gains taxes for some investors, but some fund holders
could see higher costs, managers and analysts said.

Though details of Clinton’s plan have yet to be finalized,
the candidate’s proposal, first reported by the Wall Street
Journal, would increase the holding period required to qualify
for lower long-term rates. Currently, gains on
investments held for less than a year are taxed at ordinary
income tax rates, while those held for longer than a year are
taxed at a maximum rate of 23.8 percent for the highest earners.

Jul 12, 2015

Breaking ranks, ClearBridge’s Kagan frets over CEO pay ‘arms race’

BOSTON (Reuters) – U.S. companies often pay their CEOs far too much compared with their lowest-paid workers as boards of directors compete to compensate their top executives more than peers.

That harsh critique actually comes from one of Corporate America’s friends.

“It would be healthier for our society if CEOs were paid less,” said Michael Kagan, who oversees about $9 billion in assets as a senior portfolio manager at ClearBridge Investments in New York. “You have this arms race, where people look at peers to see the pay is fair, so pay is raised year after year.”

Jul 12, 2015

Interview: Breaking ranks, ClearBridge’s Kagan frets over CEO pay “arms race”

BOSTON (Reuters) – U.S. companies often pay their CEOs far too much compared with their lowest-paid workers as boards of directors compete to compensate their top executives more than peers.

That harsh critique actually comes from one of Corporate America’s friends.

“It would be healthier for our society if CEOs were paid less,” said Michael Kagan, who oversees about $9 billion in assets as a senior portfolio manager at ClearBridge Investments in New York. “You have this arms race, where people look at peers to see the pay is fair, so pay is raised year after year.”

    • About Ross

      "I cover mutual funds and the companies that offer them including Fidelity Investments and Legg Mason Inc, plus related topics like retirement savings issues and socially responsible investing. I'm based in Boston and joined Reuters in 2009."
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