Wednesday 15 January 2020 12:25 pm

Blackrock: Asset management titan's quarterly profits jump 40 per cent

Blackrock has reported a 40.3 per cent rise in quarterly profit and its strongest ever inflows as investors poured more money into the investment titan’s exchange-traded funds (ETFs) amid concerns over slowing global growth. 

Net income at the world’s largest asset manager jumped to $1.3bn (£999m) in the three months ending 31 December, up from $927m a year earlier. 

Read more: Blackrock takes tougher stance on climate change after campaigner pressure

Blackrock ended the quarter with $7.43 trillion in assets under management, up from $5.98 trillion at the end of 2018.

“Blackrock’s 2019 results confirm the uniqueness of our globally integrated, asset management and technology platform,” said founder and chief executive Larry Fink.

The investment titan racked up a record $429bn total net inflows for 2019, $129bn of which were during the fourth quarter, representing seven per cent organic asset growth and five per cent organic base fee growth over the year.

Blackrock said this rise was driven by the strong performance of its fixed income offerings, as well as cash flows and record activity in its illiquid alternative market.

The inflows outpaced Vanguard, Blackrock’s index fund competitor and the world’s second largest fund manager, which reported total net inflows of $268bn in 2019.

“Today’s results reflect the systematic investments we’ve made to build broader and deeper client relationships and meet their evolving needs,” said Fink.

Blackrock yesterday announced an overhaul of its investment strategy, taking a tougher stance on climate change following sustained pressure from campaigners.  

Blackrock said it will put environmental sustainability at the heart of its strategy after coming under criticism that it was failing to use its clout to help combat climate change. 

Read more: What Blackrock’s climate change strategy overhaul actually means

In a statement released with today’s results, Fink said the “acceleration of our sustainability efforts is yet another example of Blackrock’s commitment to helping clients build more resilient portfolios and navigate investment opportunities and risks”.

Blackrock today reported diluted full-year earnings per share of $28.43 — a seven per cent increase — or $8.29 for the fourth quarter alone.