BlackRock reaches record $10 trillion in assets under management Financial Markets News

Funds flowing into BlackRock’s exchange-traded funds surged in the fourth quarter, helping the firm become the first asset manager to hit the $10 trillion milestone.

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BlackRock became the first public asset manager to hit $10 trillion in assets, fueled by a surge in inflows into its exchange-traded funds in the fourth quarter.

In the three months ended Dec. 31, investors poured a net $104 billion into ETFs, a record for the company, the company said in a statement Friday.

Chart shows BlackRock's assets under management rising to record levels in 2021

The world’s largest asset manager has also benefited from a market rebound, with the S&P 500 up 11% in the most recent quarter and 27% in 2021. Investors added a net $169 billion to BlackRock’s long-term investment vehicles, which include ETFs and mutual funds, in the last three months of the year.

“Our business is more diverse than ever,” Chief Executive Larry Fink said in the statement. “Aggressive strategies, including alternatives, contributed more than 60% of organic base expense growth in 2021.”

The results cemented BlackRock’s lead in the industry, with assets under management rebounding from losses at the end of the third quarter. The earnings come ahead of Fink’s annual letter to business leaders, which lays out priorities on everything from board diversity to climate change.

Chart shows surge in inflows into BlackRock active funds in Q4 2021

Actively managed funds, including ETFs and mutual funds, saw net inflows of $101 billion. BlackRock now manages $2.6 trillion in such assets. The company’s alternative businesses, which include hedge funds, saw inflows of $5.5 billion, bringing total assets to $265 billion.

Compensation and benefits increased by $218 million compared to the fourth quarter of 2020, reflecting the company’s move to increase employee compensation as U.S. inflation soars, starting in September for all employees at director level and below The base salary rose by 8%.

New York-based BlackRock posted adjusted earnings of $10.42 a share, beating the average estimate of $10.15 by analysts polled by Bloomberg. Revenue for the quarter was $5.11 billion, missing the average estimate of $5.16 billion.

Edward Jones analyst Kyle Sanders said BlackRock is under-revenue due to lower performance fees. The stock fell 1.6 percent to $854 in early New York trade.

(Added analyst commentary in last paragraph. An earlier version of this story corrected ETF records and amounts in Tier 1 headings.)