November 02, 2022
Vanguard has a history of reimagining investment management to level the playing field for individual investors everywhere and to give them the best chance for investment success. As an investor-owned organization,1 we remain laser focused on serving our clients’ interests and helping them achieve their financial goals. Our unique ownership structure allows us to take a long-term view, consistently reduce the cost and complexity of investing, and, ultimately, help tens of millions of everyday people save for their retirement, their children’s education, or other priorities.
As we continue this tradition of leadership on behalf of investors, Vanguard is working to offer our clients a greater voice in proxy voting.
Currently, Vanguard’s Investment Stewardship team casts proxy votes relating to portfolio securities held by Vanguard-managed equity funds. This team of experienced professionals is an important part of how we advocate for long-term value creation for investors.
This team will continue to play its role in promoting strong corporate governance, but we also want to assess ways to provide individual investors the opportunity to participate more directly in the proxy voting process. Our clients have diverse perspectives, and a growing number would like the option to weigh in on how their index funds vote on important proxy questions at the companies held in the funds.
We’re encouraged by our discussions with clients, industry partners, and policymakers on this topic, and are making progress to address the significant operational hurdles involved. In early 2023, we will pilot a number of proxy voting policy options for individual investors to choose from in several Vanguard-managed equity index funds. We plan to gather client and stakeholder feedback as we test this approach and explore the full range of options with respect to proxy voting choices for index funds.
In this endeavor, as always, we are guided by our mission to take a stand for all investors, to treat them fairly, and to give them the best chance for investment success.
1 Vanguard is investor-owned, meaning the fund shareholders own the funds, which in turn own Vanguard.