UK - Manifest attacks LSE questionnaire Corporate governance exp-erts have hit back at the introduction of a single questionnaire to assess listed companies' responsibility and ethical performance.
Proxy voting agency Manifest claims the London Stock Exchange’s corporate responsibility exchange, which was launched last month, could turn into a box-ticking exercise.
The new service - available at a charge to the companies providing information, and the consultants and investors demanding it - aims to offer a single, comprehensive point of information and to reduce “questionnaire fatigue”.
But Manifest warned that a monopoly supplier of information - even the respected LSE - should be treated with caution.
It claimed that without the associated dialogue which fund managers find “invaluable”, a centralised questionnaire could turn into “the worst of box-ticking exercises”.
Manifest also warned that in practice some investors would have supplementary questions, and companies would still have to respond to those which had not subscribed to the exchange.
While Manifest welcomed the focus on corporate governance, it said the LSE - now a commercial company - had no sanction against companies which mislead or omit information, and investors could be deceived.
A Manifest spokesman said: “Perhaps the Stock Exchange would have been better employed drafting a disclosure code and ensuring the information goes into the public domain.”
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