Only a minority of Australian superannuation funds disclose their voting records, and many have failed to back shareholder resolutions on ESG issues in their own country, whilst supporting them overseas. Those are a couple of the top-line messages from a new report from the Australian Council for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR). According to the ACCR, just 11 of the 50 largest funds disclose a complete proxy voting record, including both Australian and international shares. And just three funds supported more than 75% of the shareholder proposals on ESG issues that they voted on globally in 2018: Local Government Super (91%), Vision Super (88%) and Cbus (77%).
Metro Bank went into today’s AGM having taken fire for both its financial reporting and due to an ill-advised business relationship between the firm and a company run by the chair Vernon Hill’s wife. It’s also a heavily shorted stock. Just based on public disclosures (which only include shorts above 0.5%) the short position is over 10%. In practice it is likely to be significantly higher. What’s striking about shorting these days is the involvement of more traditional institutional investors, alongside the hedge funds. For example, shorts in Metro Bank include both Odey, with 3.83%, and Artemis Investment Management, with 0.87%. Or if we look