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Investment funds in an era of financialisation

The Promises and Limitations of the New Financial Economy

Roger M. Barker and Iris H.-Y. Chiu

We discuss the rise of institutional fund management as part of the global trend towards financialisation. This context allows us to draw out the key characteristics of modern institutional fund management which are important in shaping their corporate governance roles. The context of financialisation allows us to appraise whether institutions behave like fiduciary or universal capitalists as some commentators have proposed, or self-interested agency capitalists, as suggested by others. Key words: financialisation, fiduciary capitalism, universal owners, agency capitalism, money manager capitalism, asset allocation.

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Introduction

Global Perspectives

Susan Watson and P.M. Vasudev

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Veronique Magnier

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Introduction

A Survey of Legal and Regulatory Trends

P. M. Vasudev and Susan Watson

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Implications of shareholder activism

A Survey of Legal and Regulatory Trends

Anita Anand

This chapter asserts that shareholder democracy, or the ability of shareholders to influence the corporation through their vote, underpins the legitimacy of shareholder activism. Examining the empirical literature that evidences the benefits of shareholder activism, the chapter argues in favour of increased shareholder representation in director nominations by proxy, not only for the sake of shareholder democracy, but also for the overall benefit of the corporation. Keywords: • Shareholder activism • Hedge fund activism • Shareholder democracy • Director primacy • Proxy access • Canada Business Corporations Act

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Karin Lukas, Barbara Linder, Astrid Kutrzeba and Claudia Sprenger

In recent years companies have been facing increased scrutiny of their human rights conduct. However, international human rights law has traditionally been state-based yet provides often dissatisfying judicial means of conflict resolution between companies and victims of human rights violations. In practice this leads to a serious governance gap, with the result that many corporate human rights violations go without redress or remedy.

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Bo Xie

Chapter 1 deals with the concept of and approaches to ‘corporate rescue’ and examines the theoretical debate on the goals of insolvency law and corporate rescue, and how those various and sometimes competing goals could be effectively served. It further considers the advantages of the pre-pack approach in corporate rescue and questions whether this pragmatic approach to rescue is capable of accommodating different goals in corporate rescue, in the absence of an agreed working standard against which to measure these goals.
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José Gabilondo

This chapter establishes the foundation for the book’s argument by examining three core questions posed by the 2007–2008 financial crisis. First, what exactly does bank funding encompass? Second, markets already impose capital constraints on all firms so why should governments place additional requirements on how banks fund themselves? Moreover, why should funding regulation target banks given that non-bank intermediaries also play an important role in contemporary credit markets? The 2007–2008 financial crisis provided a laboratory for these questions, which post-crisis regulation has tentatively answered with new standards for bank funding liquidity and capital.

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Edited by Claire A. Hill and Steven Davidoff Solomon