The Local Authority Pension Fund Forum
The UK’s leading collaborative shareholder engagement group with combined assets of over £200 billion
Local authority pension fund investment policies have important implications for their beneficiaries, local communities, council tax payers and the wider economy.
As a group, local authority funds are now amongst the most important domestic asset owners, and typically account for a significant slice of the ownership of UK-listed companies.
Given the nature of their liabilities, local authority pension funds can adopt a more long-term approach to the companies they invest in. This allows them to look beyond the focus on the next quarter to ensure a positive societal and environmental impact, but underpinned by assuring long-term competitive financial returns.
Much of the Forum’s work is in ensuring that companies have the right policies and right people in place to create value for shareholders over the long term.
Therefore the Forum considers that issues such as climate change and employment standards require as much investor attention as more traditional concerns such as corporate governance and executive remuneration.
In some aspects of its work, LAPFF adopts a more high-profile and interventionist approach to shareholder engagement. It has led investor criticism of accounting standards that can misrepresent the capital position of financial institutions, and spoken out publicly against poor standards and excessive pay at the banks. It has also been an integral part of an investor grouping encouraging a positive response by companies to climate risk by filing supportive shareholder resolutions.
With stewardship now forming a core part of shareholders’ responsibilities, LAPFF’s long-standing commitment to responsible and robust engagement has ensured it is recognised as one of the most influential UK investor groups.