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BlackRock Review

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This review was produced by SmartAsset based on publicly available information. The named firm and its financial professionals have not reviewed, approved, or endorsed this review and are not responsible for its accuracy. Review content is produced by SmartAsset independently of any business relationships that might exist between SmartAsset and the named firm and its financial professionals, and firms and financial professionals having business relationships with SmartAsset receive no special treatment or consideration in SmartAsset’s reviews. This page contains links to SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool, which may or may not match you with the firm mentioned in this review or its financial professionals.

BlackRock Investment Management is a massive, multinational advisory firm with several different business arms in the financial sector. The firm's services focus on investment management, though it does provide some financial planning services too. The firm's parent corporation is BlackRock, Inc., which boasts one of the largest collections of assets under management (AUM) in the world.

BlackRock Background

BlackRock Investment Management is just one part of a much larger organization called Blackrock, Inc., which is a publically traded corporation that has clients in more than 100 countries. BlackRock Fund Advisors, the oldest arm of the advisory business of BlackRock, was started in 1984. BlackRock Investment Management was then created in 1999. The entire BlackRock enterprise has trillions in assets on its balance sheets. Laurence D. Fink is the firm's founder, chairman & CEO.

BlackRock Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

BlackRock serves an incredibly wide variety of clients, many of which are institutions. Among these institutional clients are registered investment companies, business development companies, private investment funds, real estate investment trusts (REITS), profit-sharing plans, pension funds, insurance companies, charities, estates, trusts, state governments, local governments and businesses. The bank also works with individuals both with and without a high net worth.

Minimum account sizes at BlackRock vary considerably based on the type of account you open. Minimums tend to range from $250,000 to $1 million based on the strategy used. All minimums may be changed or waived at the discretion of the firm.

Services Offered by BlackRock

BlackRock offers portfolio management and investment management through multiple different accounts and programs. It provides limited financial planning services.

The firm offers a wide range of investing strategies through in-house and third-party separately managed accounts (SMAs), private funds and other platforms. Many accounts have different strategy options available, such as fixed-income, global equity, regular equity, alternatives and multi-asset. BlackRock Investment Management primarily works with individual and institutional clients, and it sponsors a wrap fee program.

BlackRock Investment Philosophy

BlackRock, like many other investment advisors, works with clients to determine their investment preferences. This will, in turn, help them figure out the right investment strategy for them. This involves taking note of a client's risk tolerance and time horizon, as well as any income needs or investment restrictions a client may have.

The firm and its advisors often consider credit ratings when it comes to evaluating securities for potential investment. They use a variety of management styles, from active and systematic to index and passive management. The firm also uses proprietary software to help evaluate risks and possible investments for clients. 

Fees Under BlackRock

BlackRock charges a plethora of fees using different schedules that depend on the type of account you open, as well as the particular strategy that you use. While certain accounts have standard fee schedules, some may be subject to negotiation and can therefore vary.

Wrap Fee Schedule for Equity, Balanced, Retirement Journey and WDP Strategies
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $500,000 2.50%
Next $500,000 2.00%
Next $2,000,000 1.50%
Next $7,000,000 1.00%
Next $40,000,000 0.50%
More than $50,000,000 Negotiable

 

Non-Wrap Fee Schedule for Equity and Balanced Investment Strategies
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $1,000,000 1.00%
Next $2,000,000 0.75%
Next $7,000,000 0.60%
Next $40,000,000 0.45%
More than $50,000,000 Negotiable

 

Non-Wrap Fee Schedule for Single-Style Fixed-Income Investment Strategies
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $1,000,000 0.90%
Next $2,000,000 0.75%
Next $2,000,000 0.60%
Next $5,000,000 0.525%
Next $10,000,000 0.45%
Next $30,000,000 0.375%
More than $50,000,000 Negotiable

 

Non-Wrap Fee Schedule for Multi-Strategy Fixed-Income and Target Income Investment Strategies
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $500,000 1.50%
Next $500,000 1.25%
Next $9,000,000 1.05%
Next $5,000,000 1.02%
Next $5,000,000 0.98%
Next $5,000,000 0.95%
More than $25,000,000 Negotiable

 

SMA Program: Fixed-Income Investment Strategy 
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $1,000,000 0.35%
Next $2,000,000 0.30%
Next $2,000,000 0.25%
Next $5,000,000 0.22%
Next $10,000,000 0.20%
More than $20,000,000 0.15%

 

SMA Program: Equity Investment Strategy
Asset Levels Annual Fee
First $1,000,000 0.65%
Next $2,000,000 0.60%
Next $7,000,000 0.45%
Next $15,000,000 0.40%
Next $25,000,000 0.35%
More than $50,000,000 0.25%

 

SMA Program: Tax Managed Equity Investment Strategy
Asset Levels Annual Fee
$0 - $4.9,000,000 0.28%
$5,000,000 - $14.9,000,000 0.27%
$15,000,000 - $24.9,000,000 0.25%
$25,000,000 - $49.9,000,000 0.24%
$50,000,000 - $74.9,000,000 0.21%
$75,000,000 - $99.9,000,000 0.20%
Above $100,000,000 0.17%

 

SMA Program: Fixed-Income Laddered Investment Strategy
Asset Levels Annual Fee
All asset levels 0.10%

BlackRock Awards and Recognition

BlackRock is an extremely well-known firm. It has many awards to its name, despite the some public controversy that exists surrounding the firm.

  • Named one of America’s Most JUST Companies, according to Forbes and JUST Capital (2020)
  • Ranked #1 in the financial industry in the inaugural U.S. Transparency Awards
  • Included in Dow Jones's index of the most sustainable companies in North America
  • Rated one of the 100 Most Sustainable U.S. Companies by Barron’s
  • Named one of the Wall Street Journal’s best managed companies of 2019

What To Watch Out For

BlackRock Investment Management has 14 disclosures on its Form ADV. These disclosures are the result of a variety of different situations, such as violating whistleblower protections, improper filings and more. As a result, the firm has submitted to censure and been forced to pay fines on a few occasions.

BlackRock is a fee-based firm, meaning its advisors can earn commissions from selling certain securities to clients. This is a potential conflict of interest. Despite this, the firm is a fiduciary and is therefore legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients at all times.

Opening an Account with BlackRock

If you're interested in opening an account with BlackRock, go to the firm's website and submit a form or call the firm over the phone.

All information is accurate as of the writing of this article.

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How Long $1mm Lasts in Retirement

SmartAsset's interactive map highlights places where $1 million will last the longest in retirement. Zoom between states and the national map to see the top spots in each region. Also, scroll over any city to learn about the cost of living in retirement for that location.

Least
Most
Rank City Housing Expenses Food Expenses Healthcare Expenses Utilities Expenses Transportation Expenses

Methodology We analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns to determine how many years of retirement a $1 million nest egg would cover in cities across America.

First, we looked at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the average annual expenditures of seniors. We then applied cost of living data from the Council for Community and Economic Research to adjust those national average spending levels based on the costs of each expense category (housing, food, healthcare, utilities, transportation and other) in each city. Using this data, SmartAsset calculated the average cost of living for retirees in the largest U.S. cities.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a real return (interest minus inflation) of 2%. Then, we divided $1 million by the sum of each of those annual numbers to determine how long $1 million would cover retirement expenses in each of the cities in our study. Cities where $1 million lasted the longest ranked the highest in the study.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Council for Community and Economic Research