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Larry Fink

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Larry Fink
Fink in 2010
Laurence Douglas Fink

(1952-11-02) November 2, 1952 (age 71)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
EducationUniversity of California, Los Angeles (BA, MBA)
TitleChairman and CEO, BlackRock
Lori Weider
(m. 1974)

Laurence Douglas Fink (born November 2, 1952) is an American billionaire businessman. He is a co-founder, chairman and CEO of BlackRock, an American multinational investment management corporation.[1] BlackRock is the largest money-management firm in the world with more than US$10 trillion in assets under management.[2][3] In April 2024, Fink's net worth was estimated at US$1.2 billion according to Forbes.[4] He sits on the boards of the Council on Foreign Relations and the World Economic Forum.[5]

Early life and education[edit]

Fink was born on November 2, 1952.[6][7] He grew up as one of three children in a Jewish family[8][9] in Van Nuys, California, where his mother Lila (1930–2012) was an English professor and his father Frederick (1925–2013) owned a shoe store.[3] He earned a BA in political science from UCLA in 1974.[7] Fink was also a member of Kappa Beta Phi.[10] He then received an MBA in real estate at the UCLA Anderson School of Management in 1976.[7][11]


1970 to 2000[edit]

Fink started his career in 1976 at First Boston, a New York-based investment bank,[12] where he was one of the first mortgage-backed security traders and eventually managed the firm's bond department.[13] At First Boston, Fink was a member of the management committee, a managing director and co-head of the Taxable Fixed Income Division. He also started the Financial Futures and Options Department and headed the Mortgage and Real Estate Products Group.[14]

Vanity Fair reported, in 2010 that Fink had increased First Boston's assets by about $1 billion.[3] He was successful at the bank until 1986, when his department lost $100 million due to his incorrect prediction about interest rates.[3] The experience influenced his decision to start a company that would invest clients' money while also incorporating comprehensive risk management.[3]

In 1988, under the corporate umbrella of The Blackstone Group, Fink co-founded BlackRock and became its director and CEO. When BlackRock split from Blackstone in 1994, Fink retained his positions,[3] becoming chairman in 1998 after BlackRock became independent. His other positions at the company have included chairman of the board, chairman of the executive and leadership committees, chair of corporate council and co-chair of the global client committee.[15] BlackRock went public in 1999.[16]


Fink, third from right, receiving a Woodrow Wilson Award in April 2010

In 2003, Fink helped to negotiate the resignation of the CEO of the New York Stock Exchange, Richard Grasso, who was widely criticized for his $190 million pay package.[3] In 2006 Fink led the merger with Merrill Lynch Investment Managers, which doubled BlackRock's asset management portfolio.[7] That same year, BlackRock's $5.4 billion purchase of Stuyvesant Town–Peter Cooper Village, a Manhattan housing complex, became the largest residential-real-estate deal in U.S. history. When the project ended in default, BlackRock clients lost their money, including the California Pension and Retirement System, which lost about $500 million.[3]

The U.S. government contracted BlackRock to aid its recovery after the financial crisis of 2008. Fink's longstanding relationships with senior government officials have led to questions about potential conflicts of interest regarding government contracts awarded without competitive bidding.[3] BlackRock's contract led to relationships with Obama's first Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and additional members of the Obama economic recovery team.[17] In 2016, Fink aspired to becoming Hillary Clinton's Treasury Secretary.[18] Blackrock also hired many former executive branch appointees to its firm,[19] strengthening its association with the federal government.[19]

In December 2009, BlackRock purchased Barclays Global Investors, at which point the company became the largest money-management firm in the world.[3] Despite his great influence, Fink is not widely known publicly, apart from his regular appearances on CNBC.[3] BlackRock paid Fink $23.6 million in 2010,[20] and $36 million in 2021.[21] By 2016, BlackRock had $5 trillion under management, with 12,000 employees in 27 countries.[22][23]

In 2016, Fink received the ABANA Achievement Award in New York City. It recognizes an individual who exemplifies outstanding leadership in banking and finance and has a commitment to positive professional cooperation between the US and the Middle East and North Africa.[24]

In 2018, Fink was ranked #28 on the Forbes list of The World's Most Powerful People.[25]

During the coronavirus pandemic of 2020 the Fed has turned to BlackRock to help it purchase distressed securities in an echo of 2008.[26]

Community involvement[edit]

Fink is on the board of trustees of New York University, where he holds various chairmanships including chair of the Financial Affairs Committee. He co-chairs the NYU Langone Medical Center board of trustees, and is a trustee of the Boys and Girls Club of New York. Fink is on the board of the Robin Hood Foundation.[27] Fink founded the Lori and Laurence Fink Center for Finance & Investments at UCLA Anderson[28] in 2009, and is its chairman.[29]

In December 2016, Fink joined a business forum assembled by then president-elect Donald Trump to provide strategic and policy advice on economic issues.[30]

In his 2018 annual open letter to CEOs, he called for corporations to play an active role in improving the environment, working to better their communities, and increasing the diversity of their work forces.[31] This has been taken as evidence of a move by BlackRock, one of the largest public investors, to proactively enforce these targets.[32] In his 2019 open letter, Fink said that companies and their CEOs must step into a leadership vacuum to tackle social and political issues when governments fail to address these issues.[33]

After the murder of Jamal Khashoggi in October 2018, Fink cancelled plans to attend an investment conference in Saudi Arabia.[34]

In his 2020 annual open letter,[35] Fink announced environmental sustainability as core goal for BlackRock's future investment decisions.[36] In this letter, he explained how climate will become a driver in economics, affecting all aspects of the economy. He also divulged in a separate letter (to investors) that BlackRock will be cutting ties with previous investments involving thermal coal and other investments that have a large environmental risk.[37]

Fink also supports the New York City Police Foundation, which is a group that provides financial support to the New York City Police Department. The non-profit Color of Change called on Fink to divest from the NYC Police Foundation in the wake of the murder of George Floyd and subsequent nationwide protests.[38][39]

Personal life[edit]

Fink has been married to his wife Lori Weider, his high-school sweetheart[40][41] since 1974. The couple have three children. Joshua, their eldest son, was CEO of Enso Capital, a now defunct hedge fund[42] in which Fink had a stake.[43]

In 2004, they bought Finch Farm in North Salem, New York from the actor Stanley Tucci for $3.7 million and have since bought seven more parcels of land there, including one from Maurice Sendak and 27 acres from the town's deputy supervisor Peter Kamenstein in 2019 for $5.4 million.[44] They also have an apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and a house in Aspen, Colorado.[3]

Fink is a lifelong supporter of the Democratic Party.[3]

Public perception[edit]

In his 2018 annual letter to shareholders, Fink stated that other companies should be aware of their impact on society;[45] however, antiwar organizations were discontented with Fink's statement because his company, BlackRock, is the largest investor in weapon manufacturers through its U.S. Aerospace and Defense ETF.[46] In September 2018, an activist with the U.S. non-profit organization Code Pink confronted Fink onstage at the Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit.[47]

Climate change[edit]

In December 2021, BlackRock teamed up with a Saudi asset manager to pay $15.5 billion to buy and then lease back gas pipelines to Saudi Aramco.[48][49]

However, Fink has been largely vocal on companies taking action on climate change, and in an open letter in 2022 stated "Every company and every industry will be transformed by the transition to a net-zero world. The question is, will you lead, or will you be led?".[50][51]

In 2022, Fink was named one of the US' top "climate villains" by The Guardian due to BlackRock profiting from deforestation.[52]



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  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Suzanna Andrews: Larry Fink's $12 Trillion Shadow, Vanity Fair, April 2010
  4. ^ "Larry Fink - 2024 Billionaires Net Worth". Forbes. Retrieved May 7, 2024.
  5. ^ "Board of Trustees", World Economic Forum
  6. ^ "Laurence Fink: Executive Profile & Biography", Businessweek.
  7. ^ a b c d Davidson, Andrew; Goldsmith, Marshall (2009). 1000 CEOs. Penguin. ISBN 9780756661243.
  8. ^ "The demonisation of BlackRock's Larry Fink". The Economist. ISSN 0013-0613. Archived from the original on July 27, 2023. Retrieved August 23, 2023.
  9. ^ "Who is Larry Fink? Is He Jewish: His Latest ESG Woe: Saudi Oil Money". coopwb.in. Retrieved August 20, 2023.
  10. ^ Roose, Kevin (2014). Young Money: Inside the Hidden World of Wall Street's Post-Crash Recruits. London, UK: John Murray (Publishers), An Hachette UK Company. p. 208. ISBN 978-1-47361-161-0.
  11. ^ "CEO Compensation: #55 Laurence D Fink". Forbes. April 22, 2009. Retrieved January 26, 2010.
  12. ^ Wigglesworth, Robin (October 7, 2021). "The ten trillion dollar man: how Larry Fink became king of Wall St". Financial Times. Archived from the original on October 28, 2021. Retrieved October 28, 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  13. ^ "Profile: Laurence D. Fink (MBA '76)". Fink Center for Finance & Investments. Los Angeles: UCLA. 2010. Archived from the original on May 24, 2012. Retrieved January 26, 2010.
  14. ^ "Laurence Fink - News, Articles, Biography, Photos - WSJ.com". July 13, 2011. Archived from the original on July 13, 2011. Retrieved January 19, 2024.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  15. ^ "Laurence Fink - News, Articles, Biography, Photos - WSJ.com", Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 14, 2011.
  16. ^ "Corporate History". Archived from the original on May 17, 2012. Retrieved March 22, 2014.
  17. ^ Andrews, Suzanna. "Larry Fink's $12 Trillion Shadow". Vanity Fair. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
  18. ^ VerHage, Julie (January 9, 2016). "BlackRock's Fink Hoping Hillary is Ticket to Treasury Post". FOXBusiness. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
  19. ^ a b "The BlackRock Revolving Door – BlackRock Transparency Project". blackrocktransparencyproject.org. Archived from the original on June 12, 2020. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
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  21. ^ Vandevelde, Mark (April 14, 2022). "BlackRock chief executive Larry Fink's pay rose to $36mn in 2021". Financial Times. Archived from the original on April 15, 2022. Retrieved April 15, 2022.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  22. ^ BlackRock shapes shifts NYTimes, September 16, 2016
  23. ^ "About Us | BlackRock". BlackRock. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  24. ^ "2016 ABANA Achievement Award Dinner". ABANA. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  25. ^ "Larry Fink". Forbes. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  26. ^ Zuckerman, Gregory; Lim, Dawn (May 10, 2020). "Big Money Managers Take Lead Role in Managing Coronavirus Stimulus". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
  27. ^ "Governance". Robin Hood Foundation. Retrieved January 13, 2015.
  28. ^ The Laurence and Lori Fink Center for Finance & Investments, Los Angeles, California: UCLA Anderson School of Management, retrieved July 22, 2017
  29. ^ "Board Leadership | UCLA Anderson School of Management". anderson.ucla.edu. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  30. ^ Bryan, Bob (December 2, 2016). "Trump is forming an economic advisory team with the CEOs of Disney, General Motors, JPMorgan, and more". Business Insider. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  31. ^ "Terms and conditions". BlackRock.
  32. ^ Weinbar, Sharon (March 29, 2018). "How big money can drive diversity in venture capital – TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved March 30, 2018.
  33. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross (January 17, 2019). "World's Biggest Investor Tells C.E.O.s Purpose Is the 'Animating Force' for Profits". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
  34. ^ Merced, Michael J. de la; Sorkin, Andrew Ross (October 15, 2018). "Blackstone and BlackRock Chiefs Withdraw From Saudi Conference". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
  35. ^ "Larry Fink's Letter to CEOs". BlackRock. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  36. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross (January 14, 2020). "BlackRock C.E.O. Larry Fink: Climate Crisis Will Reshape Finance". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  37. ^ Nacu-Schmidt, Ami. "Media and Climate Change Observatory Monthly Summary: If you think you've heard this story before, you haven't seen anything yet - Issue 37, January 2020". scholar.colorado.edu.
  38. ^ Murphy, Paul P. (May 29, 2020). "Three police officers appeared to kneel on George Floyd in new video". CNN. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
  39. ^ "Color of Change Calls on Larry Fink to Stop Supporting NYC Police Foundation". Institutional Investor. June 11, 2020. Retrieved June 12, 2020.
  40. ^ "The ten trillion dollar man: how Larry Fink became king of Wall St". Financial Times. October 7, 2021. Retrieved April 6, 2023.
  41. ^ "Fink Children's Ambulatory Care Center". NYU Langone. Retrieved January 23, 2024.
  42. ^ Copeland, Rob (September 22, 2014). "Financial Elite's Offspring Start Their Own Hedge Funds". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  43. ^ "A Second-Generation Fink Rises in Finance". The New York Times Company. September 8, 2008. Retrieved January 28, 2010.
  44. ^ Kroll, Luisa (November 28, 2021). "Welcome To "Billionaires' Dirt Road": This Pastoral Town Is Home To Larry Fink, Georgina Bloomberg, David Letterman, Richard Gere And More". Forbes. Retrieved January 23, 2024.
  45. ^ Lindsey Rae, Gjording (January 23, 2018). "Larry Fink calls on CEOs to realize their companies' social responsibility". DW.com. Retrieved November 3, 2019.
  46. ^ "iShares U.S. Aerospace & Defense ETF". BlackRock.com. 2019. Archived from the original on November 3, 2019. Retrieved November 3, 2019.
  47. ^ English, Carleton (September 20, 2018). "Larry Fink blitzed by war protesters at conference". New York Post. Retrieved November 3, 2019.
  48. ^ "BlackRock's Larry Fink tells fellow CEOs that businesses are not 'climate police'". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved May 8, 2022.
  49. ^ Azhar, Saeed (December 6, 2021). "BlackRock, Saudi asset manager Hassana sign deal for Aramco's gas pipelines". Reuters. Retrieved July 29, 2023.
  50. ^ "Larry Fink's Annual 2022 Letter to CEOs". BlackRock. Retrieved May 8, 2022.
  51. ^ Brush, Silla (January 18, 2022). "BlackRock CEO Says Nothing 'Woke' About Stakeholder Capitalism - BNN Bloomberg". BNN. Retrieved July 29, 2023.
  52. ^ "The dirty dozen: meet America's top climate villains". the Guardian. October 27, 2021. Retrieved October 19, 2022.
  53. ^ "Golden Plate Awardees of the American Academy of Achievement". www.achievement.org. American Academy of Achievement.
  54. ^ "2007". Academy of Achievement. Retrieved January 18, 2022.
  55. ^ "Appeal of Conscience Foundation to Honor Laurence D. Fink, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BlackRock, with 2015 Appeal of Conscience Award" (Press release). Cision PR Newswire.
  56. ^ "Americas Society 35th Annual Spring Party Honoring Miguel Alemán Velasco and Laurence D. Fink". Americas Society / Council of the Americas.
  57. ^ "BlackRock chairman Laurence Fink receives UCLA Medal". UCLA Newsroom.
  58. ^ "Museum of American Finance to Honor Laurence D. Fink and Dr. Janet Yellen at 2019 Gala". Museum of American Finance.

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