This is a couple weeks old, but I thought it was noteworthy that Troy Paredes, one of the commissioners at the SEC, recently gave a speech in which he advocated regulation of proxy advisory firms:
Not only is it important for regulators to recognize that one-size-fits-all governance and pay practices don’t work so well for most companies, but board members, officers, investors, and other corporate constituencies also should recognize that each company is unique. Proxy advisory firms should keep this in mind too given the understandable concern that has been raised that the recommendations of proxy advisory firms are too often based on a one-size-fits-all view of things. Indeed, given other concerns that have been expressed about proxy advisory firms — including that conflicts of interest may bias their recommendations and that their recommendations may be based on inaccurate information — it seems to me that the role of proxy advisory firms needs to be addressed.
The other parts of the speech, addressing the Dodd-Frank pay ratio and clawback requirements, are interesting as well.