Fund Plans to Curb Fat Cat Pay; Restraint and Social Responsibility Urged
Byline: LIAM MURPHY
A pounds 4.7BN pension fund for thousands of Merseyside public sector workers is spearheading a campaign against excessive pay for top company executives.
The Merseyside pension fund is hoping it will set a precedent by using its influence to vote against "fat cat" remuneration deals.
Firms likely to be hit by the action include banks, major supermarkets, retail parks, offices, industrial estates and shopping centres, that are already included in the fund's portfolio.
Wirral Council - which administers the fund for local authorities in the region - is making the anti-fat cat goal part of its "Investment Principles".
Part of a review of the principles is to find ways to "actively pursue a policy of restraint and social responsibility in relation to pay and bonuses of senior executives of the companies that it invests in".
A report to the cabinet said the Merseyside Pension Fund (MPF) - the UK's fifth largest local authority pension fund - had already opposed excessive pay for senior executives and deputy leader of the council Simon Holbrook said this was a good start "but work still needs to be done".
The report said: "In 2010, MPF voted against the remuneration report at the AGMs of its 10 largest UK shareholdings.
"MPF has consistently voted against the remuneration report at the AGMs of UK banks; a track record that pre-dates the banking crisis of 2008. …