Just as the investors in our equity funds generally have a long-term investment horizon, SAM takes a long-term, measured approach to investment stewardship. As a leading asset manager, it is our responsibility to use our proxy votes to encourage transparency, corporate governance structures, and management of ESG issues that we believe protect and promote shareholder value.
Our approach to investment stewardship
Schwab Asset Management believes that corporate directors, as the elected representatives of all shareholders, are best positioned to oversee the management of their companies. Accordingly, we typically support the recommendations of management and a board of directors on proxy matters unless we believe they are not in the best interest of our fund shareholders. We also recognize that companies can conduct themselves in ways that have important environmental and social consequences. Therefore, CSIM’s focus on maximizing long‐term shareholder value includes consideration of potential environmental and social impacts that we believe are relevant to individual companies.
Schwab Asset Management's proxy voting process focuses on:
- Board composition and quality
- Actions a board has taken to drive strategy, deliver performance, and manage relevant risks
- Clarity and accessibility of reporting on key ESG issues
Strategic engagement program
Our strategic engagement program further promotes our philosophy on the importance of strong corporate governance and risk management practices and encourages transparency through reporting relevant risks. We incorporate insights gained from these meetings into our proxy voting decisions and annual updates to our voting policies.
Investment stewardship reports
Investment Stewardship Team
Our investment stewardship team has decades of experience researching, analyzing, and advising on proxy issues. We also engage the research and voting services of well-respected independent proxy advisors that share our opinions on many governance topics.
The investment stewardship team can be emailed at SAMProxy@schwab.com.
"We have used our experience in asset management and in research across multiple asset classes to develop an approach to proxy voting that supports strong governance. We believe this will result in long-term value creation for our funds' shareholders."
Managing Director & Head of Investment Stewardship