'AGMs are an expensive waste of time and money' - so say the majority of senior executives and people in the investing community. Institutional shareholders don't bother to attend and it is protest groups and individuals with an axe to grind who take the floor.
What use is the annual general meeting? As presently constituted, not a lot, says Paul Myners, chairman of Gartmore investment fund managers. This is not just a personal view. Myners is chairman of a working group which recently reported on practical ways for improving the relationship between UK industry and institutional shareholders. His team took submissions from senior executives (chairmen, CEOs, finance directors) at over 50 listed companies and from a further 70 senior folk in the investing community. They were virtually unanimous, Myners says, in regarding the AGM in its present form as 'an expensive waste of time and money'.