The code is managed by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) and sets high management standards for those who invest money on behalf of UK savers and pensioners. Signatories are required to report annually on their stewardship policies, processes, activities and results for a 12-month reporting period.
Local government pension funds have also joined the code, including those in Essex, the London Borough of Hillingdon, Wiltshire, West Yorkshire and the Northern Ireland Local Government Officers’ Superannuation Committee.
The code has also won the pension funds of two banks, including the HSBC bank pension scheme (UK) and the NatWest group pension fund.
During the recent review process, 43 new signatories were added, bringing the total number of signatories to 236, with assets under management of £40.7bn, up from £33.3bn.
The FRC said it was encouraging that signatories reporting for their second year, having first applied in 2021, had in most cases used the feedback they received to improve their reporting this year. .
The watchdog found improvements in the quality of reporting on activities and results for engagement, collaboration and escalation, contributions to systemic and market-wide risk management, and improving the functioning of financial markets. He also said there were improvements in reporting on how signatories monitor and hold accountable third parties, such as asset managers and service providers.
However, the FRC called on signatories to put more emphasis on reporting their activities and results during the reporting period, using both quantitative and qualitative evidence – an area the FRC will focus on. more emphasis in future assessment updates.