(Bloomberg) -- Investors are raising concerns that Japan’s logjam of annual general meetings on the same day will limit shareholder engagement, posing an obstacle for corporate governance. 

Almost 60% of companies will hold meetings this month, among which 30% will host on June 27, according to Japan Exchange Group Inc. Blue-chip names with heavy weightings on the benchmark Topix — such as Nintendo Co., Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. and Mitsui Fudosan Co. — will report on that day. 

“There’s been cases where you cannot physically attend AGMs,” said Mamoru Shimode, chief strategist at Resona Asset Management Co. “It’s natural for activist investors to want it spread out.”

The frustration comes as Japan’s government and the Tokyo Stock Exchange continue to push companies to increase returns for shareholders, an effort that has helped lift the Nikkei 225 Stock Average to an all-time high. A study released last month from Japan’s state pension fund, the world’s largest, concluded that investor engagement helps boost a company’s market value. 

Read: Better Corporate Governance in Japan Pays Off for Investors 

Peak days have eased over the last two decades but are still clustered during the last week of June, as a law requires companies to hold AGMs within three months after the so-called record date on which companies determine a shareholder’s eligibility to vote. In overseas markets, meetings can be held four to five months from the end of the business year, according to Yoshio Kawatani, a researcher from Dai-ichi Life Group. 

Institutions like the Legal & General Investment Management have been encouraging companies to move the record date to help alleviate time pressure on companies and auditors. An extension would also help firms provide more documents in English, bringing Japan closer to global standards, it said. 

“Despite ongoing efforts, we haven’t seen much positive change,” said Aina Fukuda, head of Japan investment stewardship at the fund manager. “I believe that without addressing these issues it’s unlikely we will see AGM dates spread out any further beyond the currently concentrated week.”

©2024 Bloomberg L.P.