https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/artic ... t-a-winner
And then quotes from this recent Financial Times article:I will say that if I ran one of the big index-fund companies, and a pharmaceutical company in my portfolio developed a patented fully effective cure for Covid-19 that it could manufacture cheaply and planned to sell to anyone who could pay $50,000 a dose, I would call that company right up and say “no, you give that pill away for free, because the value to me of Covid-19 going away quickly and the economy recovering—the value to me as an owner of airlines and hotels and chain restaurants and retailers and every other company—is vastly, vastly greater than the value to me of your profits on that pill.” Strictly as a financial matter I mean, strictly as a matter of my fiduciary duty to my investors. I would call my index-fund-manager friends and tell them to do the same thing, and between us we might own enough shares of the company’s stock to make it do what we want. Later the antitrust authorities would ask us some uncomfortable questions about our conversations, but in these extreme circumstances that is a risk I’d live with.
https://www.ft.com/content/b452ceb9-765 ... 73d736f92a
And:The world’s biggest investors are urging drugmakers to collaborate on developing a coronavirus vaccine to end a crisis that has unleashed market turmoil and hammered returns for pension funds across the world.
BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, Fidelity Investments and sister company Fidelity International, Aviva Investors, Janus Henderson and Amundi, Europe’s largest asset manager, all told the Financial Times that they want drug companies to put aside any qualms about collaborating with rivals. …
Actionably:A separate group of more than 50 investors, managing more $2.5tn in assets, will next week step up the pressure by writing to more than a dozen global pharmaceutical companies. The letter will ask the groups to share any relevant findings on a vaccine and other treatments as well as to drop any enforcement of relevant patents.
Maybe we should all call up Vanguard and tell them to get in on that action?