Bank of America shareholders revive chairman debate


Bank of America Corp Chairman and Chief Executive Brian Moynihan will once again face a shareholder vote on whether he should maintain both roles, according to the bank's proxy filing on Wednesday.

A shareholder proposal calls on the bank's board to install an independent chairman, while it allows for the board's discretion to only apply the policy to the next CEO.

Shareholders also successfully submitted proposals on whether the second-largest U.S. bank should toughen claw-back provisions for executive pay, consider divesting some of its assets and prepare a report examining gender pay equity.

The four proposals will be put up for vote at the bank's annual general meeting on April 26.

In the proxy, Bank of America's board advised shareholders to reject each of the shareholder proposals, as they have in the past. A proposal in 2015 to split the chairman and CEO roles was unsuccessful, as were previous proposals to strengthen claw-back rules.

At Citigroup Inc and Wells Fargo & Co annual meetings, shareholder proposals calling for studies of divesting assets and gender pay differences also will be up for votes, according to proxy statements which those two banks also filed on Wednesday.

In past years, divestiture study proposals at big banks have failed by large margins after being offered as first steps toward possibly breaking them up to boost shareholder returns.

The Citigroup proxy also includes a proposal to toughen claw-back provisions for executive pay. Unlike Bank of America, both Citigroup and Wells Fargo have different individuals serving as chairman and chief executive.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon and David Henry; editing by Lauren Tara LaCapra and Jonathan Oatis)