From the Editor...
The way funds are overseen varies from firm to firm, with many having a unitary board structure in place and others utilizing board clusters or groups; still others have multiple boards. The Dreyfus Corp.'s funds are overseen by six board groups, with a total of 26 independent directors and numerous interested directors. Like many in the industry, the board overseeing Dreyfus Funds are facing a generational shift as a number of its sitting directors reach—or are approaching—retirement age. Consolidation is likely, as is recruitment of new directors. Board refreshment is time-consuming and very important, and it'll be interesting to watch how the Dreyfus Funds boards and others handle the task over the next several years.
One party watching closely is Morningstar, which assigns ratings to individual funds, of course, but also to fund firms. The Chicago research firm's Stewardship Grades look at a number of different factors when assigning grades, and Paulita Pike, a partner at Ropes & Gray, turns the tables in an op-ed piece she's written for Fund Board Views (expressing her opinion, not that of her firm). It's a good read, as is a piece on cybersecurity and cyber insurance, written by a team at Blank Rome LLP with independent fund directors in mind.
Here at FBV, today marks the start of our annual two-week August shutdown. We're reachable by email should you need us, but we will not be posting content again until the week of Sept. 5. Enjoy the rest of your summer, the back-to-school madness (if you're involved in that), and the calm before the market refocuses on what needs to get done before the end of the year.
Hillary Jackson, founding editor, Fund Board Views