Votes “for” directors are trending down. Due to ESG?
– The number of votes supporting directors being elected has been trending down in recent years.
– But the vast majority of directors still receive over 90% of the vote. So the trend downward is just a matter of degree. The trend could be due to ESG but it’s unknown.
Here is a cool dashboard with all sorts of statistics powered by Esgauge and The Conference Board – and the director election stats reveal that, on average, votes for individual directors has been trending down in recent years.
For example, the number of directors in the S&P 500 receiving less than 70% of the vote has risen from 21 in 2017 to 29 in 2019. In the Russell 3000, the number has jumped from 83 to 319. Percentage-wise, that’s a significant jump.
Is this due to ESG issues? We don’t know for sure – but it might be the case. Shareholders aren’t required to disclose why they vote a certain way. Of course, the vast, vast majority of directors still receive over 90% of the vote. So I doubt these statistics are much more than curious…