Goldman shareholders nearly approve proposal requiring mandatory arbitration report

Elizabeth Dilts Marshall
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Dow Jones Industrial Average stock market index listed company Goldman Sachs (GS) is seen on the clothing of a trader working at the Goldman Sachs stall on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange

By Elizabeth Dilts Marshall

NEW YORK (Reuters) -Nearly half of Goldman Sachs Group Inc shareholders voted in favor of examining how the bank uses mandatory arbitration in employee complaint cases, signaling that a growing number of investors are concerned about the policy.

While it did not pass, roughly 49% of Goldman shares voted in support of a proposal submitted by the Nathan Cummings Foundation to require the bank to conduct a report on the issue, according to a preliminary tally of the votes at the bank's annual meeting on Thursday.

The proposal would have examined how the bank's use of mandatory arbitration in employee complaint cases may "allow harassment and discrimination to go unseen," according to the foundation's statement.

Shareholder proposals rarely receive such high support. Goldman investors voted no on three other shareholder proposals, including one requesting a racial equity audit report.

Shareholders also voted yes on the bank's executive pay packages and to elect all directors.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Dilts MarshallEditing by Sonya Hepinstall)