1.6 million mutual fund votes analyzed from disclosures made by 31 August 2008
40 mutual fund families profiled on 2008 votes
600,000 votes on shareholder-sponsored resolutions over 5 years broken down into categories
10.5 million US mutual fund proxy voting records analyzed over five years
Average support for management resolutions at 90%, stable over 5 years
Average support for shareholder resolutions at 36.6% in 2008, up from 31.3% in 2004
SRI mutual fund groups such as Domini, Calvert and Citizens continue to support both governance and social and environmental resolutions filed by shareholders to a far greater extent (at around 81 and 88 percent, respectively) than do mainstream mutual fund groups such as Vanguard, Fidelity, Putnam and others (at around 45 and 11.5 percent for governance and social resolutions, respectively).
Interestingly, opposition to CSR resolutions by mainstream fund groups (votes cast ‘against’ CSR shareholder resolutions) has fallen by a full 13 percent over the five year period, from 85 percent in 2004 to 72 percent in 2008. This corresponds with a large and sustained increase in abstentions by mainstream funds on CSR resolutions over the five year period from 10 percent in 2004 to 16 percent in 2008.
Survey available for download at Fund Votes.