For a third year in a row, a study by BETTER FINANCE and DSW still points to considerable barriers to shareholder engagement as the Shareholder Rights Directive II fails to deliver for European cross-border shareholders, seriously hampering long-term investor engagement and sustainable corporate governance.
Following the entry into force of the Shareholder Rights Directive II (SRD II) in September 2020, BETTER FINANCE, together with DSW, and its other member organisations, set out to determine to what extent shareholders are really able to engage with investee companies, i.e. to fully exercise their rights by attending and/or voting at AGMs when they hold stocks of companies domiciled in a different EU Member State than that of their bank or broker.
The results of the study in 2022 are still extremely worrying, with less than half of those surveyed able to exercise their voting rights at AGMs. The high fees charged to investors (by banks or brokers) to vote at AGMs – at times exceeding €250 per AGM – remained one of the most important obstacles to voting in 2022, with an increase of 64% of instances where shareholders had to pay to exercise their rights.
- Read the full Press Release below.
- Read the 2022 AGM Season Report on “Barriers to shareholder engagement | SRD II Revisited”