All voting decisions are made on a case-by-case basis by Glass Lewis’s specialist research analysts, in line with their detailed regional policies, which are approved by Longview on an annual basis. However, Longview would advocate the exercising of votes, contrary to Glass Lewis policy, where necessary.
The decision to vote contrary to Glass Lewis’s recommendation is made collectively by the Research team and CIO and will often follow engagement between our Research team and the company. Where Longview becomes aware of a governance issue, or has concerns that the company’s management is not acting in shareholders’ interests, we are willing to challenge management in an attempt to protect and enhance the interests of our clients and will exercise our right to vote against management, where appropriate.
The Glass Lewis ViewPoint voting system employs a rigorous ballot reconciliation process to ensure that all ballots which a client is entitled to vote are indeed voted. Reconciliation is a rigorous audit process performed on a daily basis. This process compares a comprehensive list of meeting notices and agendas for shareholder meetings against the holdings data delivered to Glass Lewis by the client, custodian or client representative. This reconciliation process enables Glass Lewis to determine if ballots are missing.
For policy implementation, Glass Lewis performs a regular audit post-proxy season to determine whether any irregularities arose in applying vote recommendations. In addition, on an annual basis Longview’s Operations team conduct a review of votes cast to ensure that their rationale adheres to Glass Lewis’s policy.
Reporting & oversight
Longview’s Operations team receives a quarterly report for each participating client account from Glass Lewis, detailing all items on the agenda and votes cast for each company where there was a meeting that quarter. Reports can be accessed on a more regular basis if required. The Operations team ensures that Glass Lewis votes all proxies according to any specific client instructions and Longview’s general guidance, and retains all required documentation associated with proxy voting.
Additionally, the Operations team have regular service level calls with Glass Lewis and conduct due diligence on an annual basis to ensure Glass Lewis’s policy and procedures are up to date and functioning as expected.