By Stephen Mayne, owner of 12 Macquarie Bank shares

The Macquarie Bank AGM is this Thursday in Sydney and I’m all
booked for a day trip from Melbourne which should be full of fun and
surprises. If anyone has any questions they think deserve a run, drop
us a line at [email protected]

The bank must be breathing a sigh of relief that the Sunday
program’s crack team of Adam Shand and Paul Steindl didn’t get their
much-anticipated piece on the Allstate Exploration saga to air before
the AGM as the lads were diverted to the Steve Vizard story. We’ll give
it rev before shareholders in the ballroom of The Westin Hotel in Sydney
nonetheless.

With the top dozen Macquarie Bankers sharing in almost $100 million last
year, executive pay will undoubtedly get a big run this Thursday. Rinker,
the booming American arm of the old CSR, was good enough to
give its shareholders an early crack at the non-binding vote on its
remuneration report and despite the company’s stellar performance, a no
vote of 20% was still recorded last week.

Macquarie Bank has decided against taking such a risk and shareholders
won’t get to vote on the remuneration report until next year’s AGM,
which will make Australia’s highest paying listed company the very last
one to give shareholders a vote. Interestingly, the old CSR boss Peter Kirby sits on the Macquarie board.

The whole question of the corruption of floats and placements will be
worth another run, given that this has been a Macquarie rort for years.
For instance, rather than giving all the allocated shares in the 1996
Transurban float to their stockbroking clients, many Macquarie
executives jumped the queue and snaffled the shares for themselves.

The following table is based on the five biggest Macquarie Bank executive shareholders in Transurban revealed by the Herald Sun
after the float and assumes they’ve held the stock to this day . The
shares floated at $1 and are now worth $7.30, plus about $1.20 has been
paid out in dividends, giving a total shareholder return of about 850%.
It certainly was one of the worst deals done by the Kennett government.

Macquarie Banker 1996 Transurban Investment Total Return by 2005
Laurie Cox $750,000 $6.37m
Richard Shepherd $200,000 $1.7m
Alister Lucas $140,000 $1.2m
Paul Robertson $62,000 $523,000
Anthony Kahn $50,000 $425,000

Peter Fray

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