For Immediate Release
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
AFSCME Employees Pension Plan To Vote Against Compensation at Morgan Stanley
Use of “Say on Pay” Vote to Voice Dissatisfaction Gains MomentumWashington, DC —
The AFSCME Employees Pension Plan (“the Plan”) today announced it is voting against a management-sponsored advisory vote on compensation at Morgan Stanley’s May 18 annual meeting.
“More than 85 percent of Morgan Stanley executives’ incentive pay provides no explanation of how performance is measured,” said AFSCME Pres. Gerald W. McEntee. “We will vote against ratifying Morgan Stanley’s executive compensation to send the message that a return to business as usual will not be tolerated.”
Morgan Stanley’s 2009 executive compensation packages included increases in base salaries without sufficient rationale; a lack of transparent disclosure for 2009 incentive payments; an over-reliance upon one-year performance evaluations in granting incentive awards; and long-term performance-awards that enrich executives for finishing in the bottom half of their peer companies.
“Over-reliance on short-term profits caused Wall Street to take on too much risk, and destroyed trillions in shareholder value,” added McEntee. “Unexplained raises, mystery metrics and overemphasis on short-term performance weaken the link between pay and performance.”
The Plan’s earlier campaigns against management-sponsored advisory votes on compensation at American Express and Wells Fargo attracted significant support. Meanwhile, a May 3 vote at Motorola and a May 7 vote at Occidental Petroleum each resulted in a majority of shareholders voting against management’s executive compensation proposal.
AFSCME’s Vote No on Management Say on Pay campaign at Morgan Stanley has gained the support of shareholder advisory companies Egan-Jones Proxy Services, Taft-Hartley Advisory Services (of RiskMetrics Group Inc.) and Marco Consulting Group, who are recommending that Morgan Stanley shareholders vote against the management proposal.
The AFSCME Plan is an institutional shareholder activist with more than $850 million in assets. AFSCME’s 1.6 million members provide the vital services that make America happen. With members in hundreds of different occupations — from nurses to corrections officers, child care providers to sanitation workers — AFSCME advocates for fairness in the workplace, excellence in public services and prosperity and opportunity for all working families.