Second investment consultant signs up to UK Stewardship Code

Aon Hewitt to encourage clients to support code

Aon Hewitt has become the second pension investment consulting firm to sign up to the UK’s new Stewardship Code, a signal that that the code is starting to bed down within the investment community.

Rival Mercer was the only consultant listed when the Financial Reporting Council went live with its list of initial signatories to the code last month.

The arrival of a second consultant on the list is important because of the key role such firms play in pension fund decision-making.
Aon Hewitt, formed earlier this year with the merger between Aon Corp.’s consulting business and actuarial and consulting firm Hewitt Associates, has annual revenues of $4.3bn and 29,000 staff globally.“Aon Hewitt Investment Consulting recognise that equity investors have rights and responsibilities as share owners,” the firm’s statement says.

“We support the Stewardship Code as a helpful framework for the ownership activities of equity investors.

“We encourage our clients to support the Code, and to carefully consider the implications and challenges it presents both for them and also for their delegated agents, the investment managers.

The development comes as the Financial Services Authority has updated its rules to oblige all FSA-registered investment companies, except venture capital firms, to disclose against the Code.

This new measure comes into force on December 6.