Proxy vote disclosures are being politicized just as some fund industry insiders feared. Monday, the Center for Political Accountability
(CPA) released a study in which it claimed that fund advisors took "their cues" from corporate management and voted against requirements that would require publicly owned corporations to disclose political contributions.
said that it examined the 2005 proxy disclosures of 30 mutual fund firms to find out how they voted on political disclosure resolutions at 22 corporations. It found that 27 mutual funds voted their shares against the resolutions and three funds, all from Vanguard, abstained.
Those funds voting with management included Franklin Templeton, Dreyfus, Schwab, PIMCO, Fidelity and Citigroup Asset Management, according to the CPA.
One concern of the group is that fund advisors will vote with management to ensure that they do not put 401(k) contracts at risk. However, the study did not examine whether there is a correlation between the votes and which options are offered in that company's retirement plans.
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