Pax World Renews Call For CVS Caremark To Disclose Political Contributions
Pax World Shareholder Proposal Gains Traction at Annual Meeting, Wins 41 Percent Support
PORTSMOUTH, N.H.///May 14, 2010/// Pax World Management LLC, investment adviser to Pax World Funds (Pax World) and a leader in the field of Sustainable Investing, announced today that support for greater oversight of political spending and disclosure at CVS Caremark Corporation is building among the company's shareholders. With preliminary results released, 41 percent of non-abstaining shares favored a resolution filed by Pax World calling for greater board scrutiny and reporting of political and trade association spending—which Pax World believes is a sign that shareholder concern over corporate political contributions is rising in the wake of the Supreme Court's recent ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.
"Today's vote clearly signals that CVS Caremark shareholders want and expect more transparency on company political spending," said Pax World Senior Vice President for Sustainable Investing Julie Gorte. "After the Citizens United Supreme Court decision, shareholders are faced with the possibility that a flood of corporate money may be used to influence elections. Therefore, investors need to be reassured that boards are providing proper oversight of companies' political spending, and that shareowners have the information they need to assess whether companies' involvement is appropriate and a good use of investor dollars."
Pax World filed a similar proposal for the CVS Caremark's 2009 shareholder meeting which garnered 39.5 percent support. Pax World is also part of a coalition of institutional investors that has engaged with U.S. companies on this issue since 2003, working with the Center for Political Accountability (CPA). In 2010, CPA coalition members filed 48 such shareholder proposals. In addition, the U.S.-based Council of Institutional Investors and many of its members joined the CPA this year in a letter urging S&P 500 companies to adopt transparency and board oversight for political spending. To date, 75 S&P 500 companies and half of the S&P 100 have already agreed to adopt disclosure and oversight of company political spending based on the CPA's framework.
ABOUT PAX WORLD MANAGEMENT LLC
Pax World Management LLC, the investment adviser to Pax World Funds, is a recognized leader in Sustainable Investing, the integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into investment analysis and decision making. Pax World launched the financial industry's first socially responsible mutual fund in 1971. Today, Pax World offers a family of Sustainable Investing mutual funds across a range of asset classes.