The Securities and Exchange Commission today provided guidance to assist investment advisers in fulfilling their proxy voting responsibilities. The guidance discusses, among other matters, the ability of investment advisers to establish a variety of different voting arrangements with their clients and matters they should consider when they use the services of a proxy advisory firm. In addition, the Commission issued an interpretation that proxy voting advice provided by proxy advisory firms generally constitutes a “solicitation” under the federal proxy rules and provided related guidance about the application of the proxy antifraud rule to proxy voting advice. Both of these actions explain the Commission’s view of various nonexclusive methods entities can use to comply with existing laws or regulations or how such laws and regulations apply.
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