Investors UK Stewardship Code

UK Stewardship Code

The UK Stewardship Code

The UK Stewardship Code 2020 sets high stewardship standards for those investing money on behalf of UK savers and pensioners, and those that support them. Stewardship is the responsible allocation, management and oversight of capital to create long-term value for clients and beneficiaries leading to sustainable benefits for the economy, the environment and society.

The Code applies to:

  • Asset owners such as pension schemes, insurers, foundations, endowments, local government pension pools and sovereign wealth funds.
  • Asset managers who manage assets on behalf of UK clients or invest in UK assets.
  • Service providers such as investment consultants, proxy advisors, data and research providers that support asset owners and asset managers to exercise their stewardship responsibilities.

UK Stewardship Code 2020 Signatories

The FRC has released the UK Stewardship Code 2020 signatory list. The signatory list was updated on 10 March 2022.

The next deadline for applications is 31 October 2022.

Review of reporting 2021

Effective Stewardship Reporting: Examples from 2021 and expectations for 2022 analyses reports from the first applications to the revised Code. It will be useful for anyone preparing a report in application to the Code. The report focuses on four areas we would like to see improved reporting in 2022:

  • Market wide, systemic risk and well functioning markets
  • Non-listed equity
  • Outcomes
  • Engagement reporting

This webinar also features highlights from the review and an insightful discussion with two Stewardship Code signatories.

The Principles

The Code comprises a set of 12 ‘apply and explain’ Principles for asset managers and asset owners, and a separate set of six Principles for service providers. More about the Code and guidelines for reporting.

Become a signatory

To become a signatory to the Code, organisations must submit to the FRC a Stewardship Report demonstrating how they have applied the Code’s Principles in the previous 12 months. The report may cover any 12-month period beginning after 1 January 2020. The FRC will assess the report and if it meets our reporting expectations, the organisation will be listed as a signatory to the Code. Once listed, organisations must annually report to remain signatories.

The next deadline to apply to become a signatory is 30 April 2022. More about how to become a signatory.

Research

The Influence of the UK Stewardship Code 2020 on practice and reporting (PDF)

This research explores the early impact of the revised Stewardship Code on the practice and reporting of asset managers and asset owners. The FRC commissioned this independent research in March 2021, carried out by a team of researchers from Minerva Analytics, the Durham University Business School and the Dickson Poon School of Law, King’s College London to better understand the current stewardship practices of asset managers and asset owners and to assess the impact of the revised 2020 Code.

Annex 1: Methodology, survey and interview questions from the Influence of the Stewardship Code research (PDF)