BlackRock CEO Larry Fink says stakeholder capitalism isn’t ‘waking up’

Larry Fink, chief executive officer of BlackRock Inc., in Zurich, Switzerland, on Thursday, March 7, 2019.

Stefan Wermuth | Bloomberg via Getty Images

CEO of Black stones sought to defend a shareholder movement that focuses on placing the interests of broader society over profits, saying so-called “stakeholder capitalism” is neither political nor must be “awakened”.

In his widely watched annual letter to company leaders, titled “The Power of Capitalism,” BlackRock CEO Larry Fink on Monday denied allegations that the wealth manager is using his power and influence to support a progressive or politically correct agenda .

“Stakeholder capitalism isn’t about politics. It’s not a social or ideological agenda. It’s not a ‘wake-up’,” Fink said.

“It’s capitalism, driven by mutually beneficial relationships between you and the employees, customers, suppliers, and communities your company relies on to thrive. This is power. power of capitalism.”

Fink’s annual award ceremony to CEOs outlined the priorities he considers important to help BlackRock’s customers achieve “sustainable” long-term profitability and achieve their goals. In recent years, the letter has focused on a range of issues, from boardroom diversity to the climate emergency.

His public support for investing according to environmental, social and governance standards has received criticism from all sides. To some conservative group and US legislators, BlackRock, last week crossed the 10 trillion dollar mark for the property the first time management is accused of”wake up later“to conceal the transfer of funds to Chinese companies through their investment funds.

BlackRock became the first foreign company to operate a 100%-owned business in China’s mutual fund industry last year.

The asset manager previously acknowledged the US and China”complicated“economic ties. It also said it believes globally integrated financial markets can” provide people, companies and governments in all countries with better access and more effectively with capital to support economic growth around the world. “

Separately, environmental activists have attacked the company for not fully divesting from fossil fuel companies and many others that have largely contributed to the climate crisis.

Fink’s letter reaffirms the wealth manager’s policy about partnering with companies seeking to engage in so-called “energy conversionHe added that companies cannot become “climate police” on their own and instead need to work alongside governments.

“Divesting entire sectors – or simply moving carbon-intensive assets from the public to private markets – will not bring the world to net zero. And BlackRock is not pursuing divestment. away from oil and gas companies as a policy,” Fink said.

BlackRock’s CEO said the asset manager is also working to expand the initiative for investors to use the technology for proxy voting.

“We are committed to a future where every investor – even individual investors – can have the option to participate in the proxy voting process if they so choose,” Fink said.

“We know there are significant regulatory and logistical barriers to achieving this today, but we believe this can bring more democracy and more voice to capitalism. Every investor deserves a right to be heard. We will continue to pursue innovation and work with other market participants and regulators to help drive this vision to reality. .”


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