BlackRock Sets New Standard for Core Investing to Capture Accelerating Demand for ETFs

BlackRock, Inc. (NYSE:BLK) today set a new market standard for long-term investors by reducing prices across its growing U.S. iShares Core ETFs.

Institutions, individuals, and financial advisors are increasingly putting low-cost ETFs at the center of their long-term investments. Now, with the Department of Labor (DoL) fiduciary rule coming into force, financial advisors are sharpening their focus on the quality and cost-efficiency of funds. BlackRock expects these advisors will use ETFs more and more as active tools and alongside high-conviction active funds to build better portfolios for clients. We also expect financial advisors will increasingly turn to core ETFs for long-term holdings, where value matters most.

A New Convention for Core Investing

BlackRock is re-pricing U.S. iShares Core ETFs to set a new market convention for all long-term investors and to lead this fast-growing segment of the ETF market.

“A new era is dawning for advisors and long-term investors of all kinds. To meet this historic shift, we aim to set a new market convention for core investing and long-term investors,” said Mark Wiedman, Global Head of iShares. “We brought ETFs and active management together in 2009. In 2012, we launched the iShares Core to serve long-term investors looking for great value at the center of their portfolios. Since then, individual and institutional investors have adopted iShares Core ETFs faster than we imagined. We expect this trend only to quicken.”

Quality Funds at a Great Value

“The iShares Core already offers investors and advisors the tax efficiency1, liquidity and quality they need at the foundation of their portfolios2. Now they can have the same quality at an even greater value,” said Martin Small, U.S. Head of iShares.

“We want iShares Core ETFs to be the market convention for all kinds of ETF users - home office models, digital advice platforms, asset managers and other institutions, financial advisors, and self-directed investors. We also see the Core as central to deepening our relationships with these clients. When our clients choose the iShares Core for the heart of their portfolios, they open conversations with us about other iShares and BlackRock funds.”

Helping Advisors Transition to DoL Fiduciary Rule

“This is another critical milestone to help advisors as they prepare for the major shift the DoL fiduciary rule requires – providing investors with quality index exposures at great value in the center of their portfolios,” said Salim Ramji, Head of BlackRock's U.S. Wealth Advisory business. “These enhancements to the iShares Core are the latest innovation by BlackRock to help advisors build better portfolios for investors. Together with Aladdin® Risk for Wealth, our risk management and portfolio construction platform, FutureAdvisor, a leader in B2B digital wealth management and our iRetire® tools, we are committed to being a trusted partner to wealth advisors as they transition to fiduciary practices. We also expect that deepening our wealth advisory partnerships will only increase demand for iShares ETFs and BlackRock active investments."

Enhancing Scale and Investing for Future Growth

BlackRock manages $1.3 trillion globally in AUM across its comprehensive iShares product line, including nearly $1 trillion in precision exposures and financial instruments favored by clients for their deep liquidity and global breadth.3 With more than $90 billion in net new assets raised this year, iShares is the U.S. and global leader in both flows and assets under management.4

"As we communicated at our Investor Day in June, our firm’s history is one of taking action to evolve our business ahead of changes in the investment ecosystem to drive value for clients and shareholders,” said Gary Shedlin, BlackRock’s Chief Financial Officer. “We brought together active and passive on one platform in 2009, launched the iShares Core in 2012 and, as evidenced by the acquisition of FutureAdvisor, are continuously finding new ways to use technology to better serve our clients. Today's re-pricing of iShares Core ETFs is another example of our commitment to maximize the benefits of scale as a means to efficiently invest in our business and drive higher organic growth over time.”

U.S. iShares Core – Pricing Updates effective October 5, 2016



Ratio (BPS)

Ratio (BPS)

U.S. Equity iShares Core S&P 500 ETF IVV 7 4
iShares Core S&P Mid-Cap ETF IJH 12 7
iShares Core S&P Small-Cap ETF IJR 12 7
iShares Core High Dividend ETF HDV 12 8
iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF DGRO 12 8
International Equity iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF IXUS 14 11
iShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF IEFA 12 8
iShares Core MSCI Europe ETF IEUR 12 10
iShares Core MSCI Pacific ETF IPAC 12 10
iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF IEMG 16 14
Fixed Income iShares Core Total USD Bond Market ETF IUSB 12 8*
iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF AGG 8 5*
iShares Core 1-5 Year USD Bond ETF ISTB 12 8
iShares Core 10+ Year USD Bond ETF ILTB 12 8
iShares Core International Aggregate Bond ETF IAGG 15 11

BlackRock Enhances Index Mutual Funds Range

In addition to iShares Core ETFs, BlackRock manages core building block exposures in index mutual fund vehicles. To seek to give investors the broadest array of indexed investment choices for broad market exposures, BlackRock also reduced expenses on five index mutual funds across Class K, Institutional, and Investor A share classes. The BlackRock index mutual fund family includes 13 funds investing in US equity, fixed income, real estate, and international index-based strategies. BlackRock has been managing index investment strategies on behalf of clients for more than 40 years.

FundClass K ticker

Expense Ratio


Net Expense

Net Expense

BlackRock Midcap Index Fund BRMKX 10 84 74
BlackRock Small/Mid Cap Index Fund BSMKX 18 84 74
BlackRock Small Cap Index Fund BDBKX 20 125 75
BlackRock Total International ex U.S/ Index Fund BDOKX 46 125 115
BlackRock U.S. Total Bond Index Fund WFBIX 9 65 55

About BlackRock

BlackRock is a global leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services for institutional and retail clients. At June 30, 2016, BlackRock’s AUM was $4.890 trillion. BlackRock helps clients around the world meet their goals and overcome challenges with a range of products that include separate accounts, mutual funds, iShares® (exchange-traded funds), and other pooled investment vehicles. BlackRock also offers risk management, advisory and enterprise investment system services to a broad base of institutional investors through BlackRock Solutions®. As of June 30, 2016, the firm had approximately 12,700 employees in more than 30 countries and a major presence in global markets, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East and Africa. For additional information, please visit the Company’s website at | Twitter: @blackrock_news | Blog: | LinkedIn:

About iShares

iShares® is a global leader in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), with more than a decade of expertise and commitment to individual and institutional investors of all sizes. With over 700 funds globally across multiple asset classes and strategies and more than $1 trillion in assets under management as of June 30, 2016, iShares helps clients around the world build the core of their portfolios, meet specific investment goals and implement market views. iShares funds are powered by the expert portfolio and risk management of BlackRock, trusted to manage more money than any other investment firm.5

* Net expense ratios are shown. BlackRock Fund Advisors ("BFA"), the investment adviser to the Funds and an affiliate of BlackRock Investments, LLC, has contractually agreed to waive a portion of its management fees through 06/30/2021 for AGG and 02/28/2019 for IUSB. Gross expenses for these funds are 0.06% and 0.10% respectively.

Carefully consider the funds' investment objectives, risk factors, and charges and expenses before investing. This and other information can be found in the funds' prospectuses or, if available, the summary prospectuses which may be obtained by visiting or Read the prospectus carefully before investing.

Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal.

Transactions in shares of the iShares funds will result in brokerage commissions and will generate tax consequences. iShares funds are obliged to distribute portfolio gains to shareholders. There can be no assurance that an active trading market for shares of an ETF will develop or be maintained. Diversification and asset allocation may not protect against market risk or loss of principal.

The Funds are distributed by BlackRock Investments, LLC (together with its affiliates, “BlackRock”).

The iShares Funds are not sponsored, endorsed, issued, sold or promoted by MSCI Inc., Russell Investment Group or S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC. None of these companies make any representation regarding the advisability of investing in the Funds. BlackRock is not affiliated with the companies listed above.

©2016 BlackRock. All rights reserved. iSHARES and BLACKROCK are registered trademarks of BlackRock. All other marks are the property of their respective owners. iS-19344-1016

1 97% of iShares have not distributed a capital gain in the last five years, as of 12/31/15.

2 Over a three year period, as of 12/31/2015, 64% of global iShares Funds were within 25 bps and 82% were within 50 bps of their benchmarks, based on the Net Asset Value of the Funds.

3 Source: BlackRock and Bloomberg as of 9/30/16

4 Source: BlackRock and Bloomberg as of 9/30/16

5 Based on $4.89T in AUM as of 6/30/16.

Forward-looking Statements.

This press release, and other statements that BlackRock may make, may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, with respect to BlackRock’s future financial or business performance, strategies or expectations. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words or phrases such as “trend,” “potential,” “opportunity,” “pipeline,” “believe,” “comfortable,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “current,” “intention,” “estimate,” “position,” “assume,” “outlook,” “continue,” “remain,” “maintain,” “sustain,” “seek,” “achieve,” and similar expressions, or future or conditional verbs such as “will,” “would,” “should,” “could,” “may” and similar expressions. BlackRock cautions that forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties, which change over time. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and BlackRock assumes no duty to and does not undertake to update forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in forward-looking statements and future results could differ materially from historical performance.

Additional Index Mutual Funds Footnotes

1 Gross expense ratio is based on the applicable fund’s prospectus dated October 5, 2016.

2 Previous net expense ratio is based on the applicable fund’s prospectus effective prior to October 5, 2016 and reflects net expenses, excluding investment related expenses, which are investment dividend expenses, interest expense, acquired fund fees and expenses and certain other fund expenses.

3 New net expense ratio is based on the applicable fund’s prospectus dated October 5, 2016, and reflects net expenses, excluding investment related expenses, which are investment dividend expenses, interest expense, acquired fund fees and expenses and certain other fund expenses.

4 Previous net expense ratio for Class K shares of the fund had contractual waivers with an end date of November 30, 2016. New net expense ratios for Class K shares of the fund have contractual waivers with an end date of November 30, 2017, terminable upon 90 days’ notice.

5 Previous net expense ratio for Class K shares of the fund had contractual waivers with an end date of April 30, 2017. New net expense ratios for Class K shares of the fund have contractual waivers with an end date of April 30, 2018, terminable upon 90 days’ notice.

Class K Shares are available only to certain (i) employer-sponsored retirement plans, (ii) collective trust funds, investment companies and other pooled investment vehicles, (iii) institutional investors and (iv) other investors who met the eligibility criteria for BlackRock shares or Class K shares prior to August 15, 2016 and have continually held Class K shares of the fund in the same account since August 15, 2016. Class K Shares have a $5 million initial minimum investment requirement, unless purchased as part of a qualified plan.

The net expense ratios for Institutional and Investor A shares will be higher than the net expense ratios for Class K shares set forth above.


BlackRock, Inc.
Brian Beades, 212-810-5596
Peter McKillop, 212-810-3737
Melissa Garville, 212-810-5528

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