BlackRock CEO Larry Fink spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, where he discussed the impact of the political backlash facing the company over climate and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues. Despite facing criticism, Fink suggested that the backlash has not significantly impacted BlackRock, with inflows outpacing anti-ESG-related outflows by around 100 times over the past year.
Fink was quoted saying "We lost about $4 billion of flows from various states, but in long-term flows last year we were awarded $400 billion. Just last year in the United States our clients entrusted us with an additional $230 billion. So you tell me." This statement highlights the fact that although the company faced some outflows, the inflows were still significantly higher.
Critics of BlackRock have pointed to its efforts to encourage companies to transition to a low-carbon economy in the fight against climate change as an attack on the fossil fuel industry. However, Fink stated that BlackRock is one of the biggest investors in the sector in the world and also pointed to the global shift towards cutting climate-damaging carbon emissions, particularly in Europe, as a key driver of new business.
Fink also mentioned that the recent moves by the U.S. government to finance a faster shift in the world's biggest economy through the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was also a "game changer". This suggests that the company sees this as a positive development that will benefit the company in the long run.
BlackRock CEO Larry Fink's statements at Davos suggest that the company is not significantly impacted by the backlash over climate and ESG issues and continues to see growth in the long term. The company also sees the shift towards a low-carbon economy and the actions taken by the U.S. government as positive developments that will benefit BlackRock in the long run.