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GOVERNANCE

BlackRock shareholders approve executive compensation by 90% vote

Shareholders ratified the compensation of Laurence Fink, BlackRock (BLK)'s chairman and CEO, and four other named executives at the firm's annual meeting Thursday, despite opposition from a couple of large asset owners.

The executives' compensation was ratified by a 90.1% vote, according to an 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The $202.8 billion California State Teachers' Retirement System, West Sacramento, and the Florida State Board of Administration, which oversees a total of $189.4 billion, including the $146.1 billion Florida Retirement System, Tallahassee, voted against ratifying the executives' compensation, according to their proxy-voting disclosures.

On the flip side, the $320.7 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento; C$316.7 billion ($230.8 billion) Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Toronto; C$175.6 billion Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Toronto; and $133.2 billion Texas Teacher Retirement System, Austin; supported executives' compensation.

Total compensation for Mr. Fink was $25.5 million in 2016, down 1.2% from 2015. The total compensation for the four other executive ranged from $6.1 million to $20.1 million in 2016.

Also at Thursday's annual meeting, a shareholder proposal critical of BlackRock's proxy voting on executive compensation at companies in which it invests only received approval from 2.7% of shareholders.

According to their proxy-voting disclosures, all six entities voted against the proxy-voting practices proposal.

A nearly identical proposal was voted down by 95% of shareholders at BlackRock's 2016 meeting.

In a May report, proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services recommended that shareholders vote in favor of the executives' compensation and against the proxy-voting practices proposal.