Shareholder activism pays dividends

CI's Eric Bushell cites pressures on top executives to maximize shareholder value.

Sonita Horvitch 4 June, 2014 | 6:00PM

Eric Bushell, chief investment officer at Toronto-based Signature Global Asset Management, says a new level of capital discipline in senior corporate ranks around the world will enhance shareholder value.

"This is coming at the insistence of shareholders and augurs well for equities," says Bushell. He and his team are responsible for managing some $50 billion in assets at Signature, a separate portfolio-management group under CI Investments Inc.'s umbrella.

Since the start of the global financial crisis some six years ago, management has been on the defensive and opted to hoard cash, says Bushell. "Over the past three years, shareholders have successfully pressured management and boards to focus on dividends and share buybacks. These have become a material factor in the global equity market."

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Sonita Horvitch

Sonita Horvitch  

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