Washington, D.C. – National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement on the Securities and Exchange Commission’s proposed proxy rulemaking:
Today’s announcement shows the SEC has listened to manufacturers’ concerns—and is taking action to rein in the abuses and risky practices of proxy advisory firms and politically motivated activists. Manufacturers across the country have called for reforms to help enhance our ability to grow and thrive in America. Proxy advisory firms are unregulated actors that put Main Street investors’ retirement savings at risk through their error- and conflict-ridden reports, while activists pressure manufacturers to focus on political issues at the expense of company growth. Reforming the proxy process will empower manufacturers to invest in our people and our communities more confidently—and to power economic growth for all Americans. The NAM looks forward to continuing to work with the SEC to finalize and implement this important rule proposal.
The NAM has led the effort in favor of SEC action to ensure proxy advisory firms work in the best interest of manufacturers and manufacturing workers. Over the past two years, the NAM has written several comment letters to the SEC urging reforms to the proxy process, supported legislation passed by the House of Representatives to increase SEC oversight of proxy advisory firms and launched a six-figure ad campaign in conjunction with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, including the website ProxyReforms.com, to highlight the issues that companies face in their interactions with proxy advisory firms and provide a feedback portal for businesses to share their stories.
The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.8 million men and women, contributes $2.38 trillion to the U.S. economy annually, has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for more than three-quarters of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the Manufacturers or to follow us on Shopfloor, Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org.