Notable excerpts and links to articles and reports we’ve found worthwhile reading. Some links may be intercepted by ads or may require free log-ins. Please don’t blame us for this. Publications have to make a living some way.
Stock Exchange Consolidation
Stock Exchanges in a Rush to Forge Links With One Another
What is unclear is how, exactly, these partnerships will work, or what real benefits they immediately bring — in the short term, they may be little more than photo opportunities, some analysts say. Still, that is not slowing down the handshakes.
London Stock Exchange signs access, product alliance with Tokyo Stock Exchange
The two companies intend to discuss, among other possibilities, the operation and regulation of markets for growth companies and also schemes to encourage member firms to access each other’s markets, with the eventual aim of providing a round-the-clock trading environment, the LSE said.
Announcing “The Patrick” Award for Worst Conference Call of the Season
This award—“The Patrick”—is named for the CEO of Overstock.com, whose conference calls some find as unintentionally amusing as a grade-school production of “Fiddler on the Roof.” But I will give Patrick Byrne one thing: he takes questions on his calls, good, bad, ugly, from Wall Street’s Finest, no holds barred, as MedImmune did not. Hence, the first “Patrick” award goes to David Mott, CEO, MedImmune.
Sarbanes-Oxley Backfires in Unregistered Bond Sales
Sarbanes-Oxley, the U.S. law designed to stamp out corporate fraud, is prompting more companies to keep secrets in the bond market. Siemens AG, Australian retailer Woolworths Ltd., Miller Brewing Co. of Milwaukee and at least 100 other companies are selling bonds that aren’t registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission instead of debt that requires more disclosure. The securities increased 50 percent in the past two years, five times faster than the rest of the U.S. market, according to data compiled by Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.
Rethinking IR in the Era of Global Securities Markets
There are today more than 41,000 companies listed on 50 stock markets in 45 countries. That is a big increase from a decade ago when there were only 25,000 listed companies. More are being added to the global securities market at a pace of over 1,000 companies per year. Investors clearly have a lot more companies to choose from and that must mean greater competition for capital and must put pressure on IR.
A First in Japan: Shareholders Block a Takeover
Unlike in the West, where shareholder revolts are not unusual, Japan’s corporate culture has been traditionally based on consensus between management, employees and customers, with shareholders having little say in shaping policy.
Many Buy Siders Are Taking on the Role of Researcher
Frumberg began using firstRain, a search-based application that trolls the Internet looking for information across a wide variety of sources, including blogs, corporate Web sites, obscure trade journals, FDA drug trials, litigation filings and more. “We use it more for stocks that we already own,” explains Frumberg. “But we do use the inputs to shape our opinion, and that’s really the name of the game. Can you find that incremental piece of information that helps you with your investing?”
Optimism on Global Stocks Climbs to 10-Month High
Europe remained money managers’ favorite market, with optimism about the region reaching an 18-month high, according to 206 respondents worldwide who together oversee $680 billion.
New Survey Predicts 2007 Will Set Record for CFO Turnover
A record 2,302 CFOs left their positions in 2006, according to independent research firm Liberum Research. A survey of more than 150 Tatum partners in the firm’s Executive Practice last month indicates that 93 percent believe CFO turnover in 2007 will be as high or higher than 2006. Only seven percent of the respondents expect to see fewer CFO departures in 2007.
Governance & Sustainability
Insurer to Give Investors ”Say on Pay”
Insurance company Aflac announced on Wednesday that it will become the first major company to provide shareholders with a non-binding vote on executive pay packages.
When Shareholders Pay The CEO’s Tax Bill
According to a study of roughly 1,000 large U.S. companies by consulting firm Towers Perrin, only 10% had gross-ups in 1987; today it’s 77%.
Companies Lay Out Global Framework to Fight Climate Change
The ability of so many key stakeholders with such diverse views to agree upon the Joint Statement demonstrates the possibility of fostering a global consensus on a positive, proactive approach to meeting the challenge of global climate change. The signatories include Air France, Alcoa, Allianz, American Electric Power, Bayer, China Renewable Energy Industry Association, Citigroup, DuPont, Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, ENDESA, Eni, Eskom, FPL Group, General Electric, Iberdrola, ING, Interface, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Munich Re, NRG Energy, Patagonia, Ricoh, Rolls Royce, Stora Enso North America, Suntech Power, Swiss Re, Vattenfall, Volvo, World Council of Churches, World Petroleum Council, and many others.
Know your e-customer
The most obvious segmentation is between professionals – particularly analysts – and individual shareholders. PSA Peugeot Citroën is rare in providing distinct sections for the two groups, both of which are reached from its home page. “You are Stockholder” takes users to content designed for individuals, while “You are Analyst Investor” leads to information for professionals.
As Blogging Grows, So Do Its Do’s and Don’ts
With the rush to create content, it’s easy to forget that all business communications directed to the public are subject to a variety of laws, regulations and other legal concerns. This article provides a high-level overview of the key points to keep in mind as you assess whether your company-related blog is legally compliant.