MARKETWATCH: Protesters ask Putnam Investments to divest from for-profit college

Career College Central Summary:

  • A small group of activists stormed the offices of one of the top investors in a major for-profit college chain Thursday, asking them to divest from the company.
  • Protesters from Student Debt Action and Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America, a housing counseling organization that has recently expanded its activism portfolio to include student debt issues, walked into the Boston lobby of Putnam Investments and also stood outside the company’s building demanding with chants and signs that Putnam drop its investment in ITT Educational Services ESI, +2.19%  , a for-profit college chain that operates more than 100 campuses across the country. Putnam is a privately owned firm that manages mutual funds and other investment vehicles.
  • The activists argued that Putnam’s status as one of ITT’s top investors is hurting the company’s reputation. The Securities and Exchange Commission accused ITT of misleading investors over the impact of two failing student loan programs on the company’s bottom line. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau also sued ITT last year, accusing the company of encouraging students to take on high-cost loans that were likely to end in default.
  • “Our concern here is that their business model is based on ripping off students,” said Josh Hoxie, the coordinator of Student Debt Action.
  • Nicole Elam, an ITT spokeswoman, wrote in an email that the company hasn’t experienced any “widespread concern” from shareholders over some of the issues brought up by the activists.
  • “We respect the right of people to protest as long as it’s peaceful,” she wrote.

Click through to read the full article.


Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!

Notify of