As asset managers began issuing first-quarter reports earlier this month, it was clear that volatility in the markets took a heavy toll. Many managers saw assets under management decline from the prior quarter due to market depreciation even as they enjoyed net inflows. Some managers experienced a flight to money market and similar type of strategies, away from equities.
BlackRock Inc. on April 16 reported first-quarter assets under management of $1.364 trillion, up 1% from the prior quarter and 18% from the year before.
On a conference call, executives at New York-based BlackRock, said net inflows of $35.2 billion for the quarter, largely into cash management products, offset the $32 billion drop in equity assets resulting from market depreciation.
Chairman and CEO Laurence D. Fink said his firms diversified lineup of fixed-income, equity, money market and alternatives products continued to attract new business, with $20 billion of additional liquidity wins so far this month and $23 billion of long-dated mandate wins not yet funded. Our RFP pipeline has never been stronger, Mr. Fink said. He noted that some very large institutional clients are pursuing major reallocations, with at least two fixed-income assignments of more than $10 billion currently in play. BlackRock is well positioned to win new business when calmer capital markets allow the money pouring into liquidity and Treasury-focused products to begin moving again into credit instruments, such as mortgages, he said.
BlackRock reported net income of $241.7 million for the quarter, down 25% from the prior quarter but up 24% from the year before. The sharp drop from the previous quarter was largely due to a $111 million decline in performance fees, which are mostly paid out in the third and fourth quarters of the year, according to the company. The same performance fee issue affected revenue, which fell 10% from the prior quarter to $1.3 billion, but rose 29% from the year before.