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New York Pension Funds to Challenge Wal-Mart
Author: Gretchen Morgenson, New York Times [USA], Published on: 1 May 2012
Concerned about Wal-Mart’s reported cover-up of bribery in its Mexico operations, leaders of New York City’s pension funds said Monday they would vote their 4.7 million company shares against five directors standing for re-election to the retailer’s board at its annual shareholder meeting next month....[T]hey were taking action against the Wal-Mart directors because their previous efforts to persuade the board to increase its oversight of legal and regulatory practices...were unsuccessful. In 2005...after reports that Wal-Mart had hired undocumented immigrants and violated child labor laws in three states, a group of institutional investors...asked the company’s board to hire an independent firm to review its regulatory controls and report findings to shareholders...[T]he group’s request for a review was rebuffed. “In its relentless drive for profit and expansion, Wal-Mart has paid millions to settle charges that it violated child labor laws and exploited immigrants,” ...[John Liu, New York City Comptroller] said ...“Now we learn that not only did Wal-Mart allegedly bribe its way through Mexico, but may have tried to cover up the corruption..." Wal-Mart declined to comment.