From the Editor...
We're two weeks into 2019 and the partial government shutdown continues on with no obvious end in sight. What does this mean for mutual funds and the boards that oversee them? Well, there are several ways that funds might be affected, and while boards clearly can't do anything about the shutdown, they can make sure they are informed about its potential affects on the funds they oversee. Shearman & Sterling's Jay Baris has written a very informative piece on what could happen as a result of the shutdown and how boards might think about handling the situation.
Once the Securities and Exchange Commission staff does get back to work, the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations is expected to focus during exams on board oversight practices and how they impact shareholders. OCIE released its priorities for 2019, which were similar to those in recent prior years—with the additional focus on the board. A sign of the times, some lawyers said.
In the litigation space, February is expected to be a busy month with closing arguments scheduled in the 36(b) cases against Calamos and MetWest. Clearly, the industry is hoping to continue its winning streak, though the outcomes of those two trials are not likely to be known for months still. We'll keep monitoring the situation and reporting out the latest developments.
And in the boardroom, two new independent directors have filled out the board overseeing Thrivent Financial's new interval fund. Two women came on board on Jan. 1, one the chair of a large exchange-traded funds family and the other an experienced private equity professional.
Finally, we hope you've had the chance to check out our Viewpoints e-book, which includes all of the contributed Viewpoints we've published since our fall 2015 launch. It's chock full of great information for independent directors and is an added bonus for subscribers. Enjoy!
Hillary Jackson, founding editor