Founded in February 2006, the CtW Investment Group works with pension funds sponsored by unions affiliated with Change to Win, a federation of unions representing nearly 5.5 million members, to enhance long-term shareholder returns through active ownership. Members of CtW affiliates participate in Taft-Hartley plans with over $200 billion in assets.
The long-term health of these pension plans, and the retirement security of the workers and families who rely upon them, are threatened by conflicts of interest on Wall Street and in the boardroom, a corporate backlash that seeks to weaken the accountability of executives to shareholders, and outright corporate fraud.
The CtW Investment Group responds to these challenges by organizing workers’ capital into an effective voice for corporate accountability and retirement security.
Shareholder activism around corporate governance can enhance the assets of long-term investors – particularly those of worker funds that are broadly diversified across the whole market. In addition, activities intended to monitor or influence the management of portfolio companies are consistent with a fiduciary’s obligations under ERISA. The CtW Investment Group, therefore, develops strategies and initiatives to support efforts by trustees and their pension funds to be responsible active owners.
Outside the proxy season, the CtW Investment Group pays particular attention to major corporate transactions and contests for control because of the magnitude of shareholder value at stake and the fact that many past deals have destroyed such value. The CtW Investment Group believes active engagement by shareholders with company directors and executives at these critical junctures can help to prevent, or change the terms of, otherwise questionable transactions.
We also support regulatory and shareholder initiatives to ensure independent and accountable directors, reasonable executive compensation, and sound environmental, human resource and other business policies.
The CtW Investment Group is not named fiduciary for any pension or other fund or plan, nor does it render investment advice. The CtW Investment Group does not exercise or seek to exercise any discretionary authority or discretionary control regarding management of any plan, disposition of any plan assets, proxy voting decisions, appointment of plan trustees, or any other aspect of plan management or administration. Although CtW Investment Group strategies and initiatives are thoroughly reviewed for compliance with applicable laws and regulations, the law requires trustees and other fiduciaries to conduct their own review and make independent decisions before implementing or adopting any of these strategies or initiatives.