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BlackRock Expands iShares Core for Buy-and-Hold Investors

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NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

BlackRock, Inc. (NYSE: BLK) today expanded its iShares Core lineup with 10 equity and fixed income U.S. iShares, designed to help long-term investors keep more of what they earn. This is the latest effort in BlackRock's commitment to making investing simpler, easier and more efficient for clients.

BlackRock launched the iShares Core in October 2012 as a branded suite of exchange-traded funds (ETFs). The iShares Core was designed to appeal to investors looking for a simple, low cost way to invest long-term in broad exposures in equities and bonds. Since launch, investors ranging from global institutions to U.S. retail advisors have embraced the Core and its value proposition adding more than $25 billion1 in assets to the suite including the iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets fund (NYSEArca: IEMG), now one of the largest and most popular emerging market ETFs in the world with nearly $4.6 billion in assets. Building on this momentum, earlier this year we launched iShares Core lines in our Canadian and European businesses.

BlackRock is now expanding the U.S. iShares Core to include iShares Core Select – the next level of building blocks with additional options for long-term investors. The new funds provide a simplified approach with broad, diversified exposures to:

  • U.S. growth, value, and dividend equities
  • European and Pacific equities utilizing all-cap MSCI IMI benchmarks, from the leading global equities index provider
  • Three U.S. bond sectors, and a more diversified bond market exposure

Growth of the Core

Patrick Dunne, Head of Global Markets & Investments for iShares, said:

“Investors seek value for money in long-term investments especially in core broad market exposures. That's where we are aiming to accelerate iShares growth by expanding the iShares Core.”

“We are now taking buy-and-hold investing up a level with greater choice and flexibility. Look for growth or value, seek to bump up your income stream, invest in Europe or Asia, or buy a bond sector – and do it easily and cost-effectively.”

A Secular Trend Toward ETFs for Long-Term Holdings

Around the world, investors large and small are turning to ETFs for long-term investments.

In a recent survey of current ETF personal investors in the U.S., 85% say that they are using ETFs for either only long-term holdings or a combination of long-term and short-term holdings, versus only 15% who say they are using them for short-term investments. Almost 60% of financial advisors are using ETFs in the core with roughly 60% expecting to increase their usage in the next 2 to 3 years.2

Dunne continued: “The iShares Core is designed to serve this secular shift to ETF investing by adding choice and flexibility.”

Making investing simpler, easier, and more efficient

“As this market continues to grow, investors are seeking straightforward, easy-to-understand content and resources,” Dunne added.

BlackRock is committed to meeting this need and has led in helping investors make core investments, including:

  • Creating the iShares Core concept to help investors navigate an overwhelming set of investment options
  • Simplifying into plain English product names and investment objectives
  • Offering the iShares Core Builder Tool, which creates customized global, long-term portfolios in five easy steps

Expanding the Core

These 10 additions to the iShares Core include 4 new funds and 6 existing funds that have been re-priced and, in some cases, renamed. The ten additions are:

U.S. Equities

  • iShares Core U.S. Growth ETF (NYSEArca: IUSG, formerly IWZ)*
  • iShares Core U.S. Value ETF (NYSEArca: IUSV, formerly IWW)*
  • iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF (NYSEArca: DGRO)**
  • iShares Core High Dividend ETF (NYSEArca: HDV)*

International Equities

  • iShares Core MSCI Europe ETF (NYSEArca: IEUR)**
  • iShares Core MSCI Pacific ETF (NYSEArca: IPAC)**

U.S. Fixed Income

  • iShares Core Total USD Bond Market ETF (NYSEArca: IUSB)**
  • iShares Core U.S. Credit Bond ETF (NYSEArca: CRED, formerly CFT)*
  • iShares Core U.S. Treasury Bond ETF (NYSEArca: GOVT)*
  • iShares Core GNMA Bond ETF (NASDAQ: GNMA)*

*New pricing, new names and new tickers as appropriate, effective June 12, 2014.
**New funds expected to begin trading on or about June 12, 2014.

Dunne concluded:

“If you're looking to efficiently generate income amid low interest rates, consider the new iShares Core Dividend Growth ETF and the newly re-priced iShares Core High Dividend ETF. If you would like access to Europe while seeking to keep more of what you earn, iShares Core MSCI Europe ETF provides access to 99% of the pan-European stock market in one trade.”

Ten ETFs were originally introduced as the iShares Core in 2012 include:

U.S. Equities

  • iShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF (NYSEArca: ITOT)
  • iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: IVV)
  • iShares Core S&P Mid-Cap ETF (NYSEArca: IJH)
  • iShares Core S&P Small-Cap ETF (NYSEArca: IJR)

International Equities

  • iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF (NYSEArca: IXUS)
  • iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (NYSEArca: IEMG)
  • iShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF (NYSEArca: IEFA)

U.S. Fixed Income

  • iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (NYSEArca: AGG)
  • iShares Core Long-Term USD Bond ETF (NYSEArca: ILTB)
  • iShares Core Short-Term USD Bond ETF (NYSEArca: ISTB)

About BlackRock

BlackRock is a leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services for institutional and retail clients worldwide. At March 31, 2014, BlackRock's AUM was $4.401 trillion. BlackRock helps clients 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®. Headquartered in New York City, as of March 31, 2014, the firm had approximately 11,500 employees in more than 30 countries and a major presence in key 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 www.blackrock.com.

About iShares

iShares is the global product leader in exchange-traded funds with over 600 funds globally across equities, fixed income and commodities, which trade on 20 exchanges worldwide. The iShares Funds are bought and sold like common stocks on securities exchanges. The iShares Funds are attractive to many individual and institutional investors and financial intermediaries because of their relative low cost, tax efficiency and trading flexibility. Investors can purchase and sell shares through any brokerage firm, financial advisor, or online broker, and hold the funds in any type of brokerage account. The iShares customer base consists of the institutional segment of pension plans and fund managers, as well as the retail segment of financial advisors and high net worth individuals.

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 www.iShares.com or www.blackrock.com. 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. Shares of the iShares Funds may be sold throughout the day on the exchange through any brokerage account. However, shares may only be redeemed directly from a Fund by Authorized Participants, in very large creation/redemption units.

International investing involves risks, including risks related to foreign currency, limited liquidity, less government regulation and the possibility of substantial volatility due to adverse political, economic or other developments. These risks often are heightened for investments in emerging/ developing markets or in concentrations of single countries. There is no guarantee that dividends will be paid. Fixed income risks include interest-rate and credit risk. Typically, when interest rates rise, there is a corresponding decline in bond values. Credit risk refers to the possibility that the bond issuer will not be able to make principal and interest payments.

Transactions in shares of ETFs will result in brokerage commissions and will generate tax consequences. All regulated investment companies are obliged to distribute portfolio gains to shareholders.

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., nor does this company make any representation regarding the advisability of investing in the Funds. BlackRock is not affiliated with the company listed above.

©2014 BlackRock. All rights reserved. iSHARES and BLACKROCK are registered trademarks of BlackRock. All other marks are the property of their respective owners. iS-12670-0614

1 Source: BlackRock ETP Landscape
2 Note to Editors: This BlackRock research was conducted over the Internet by research firm Market Strategies International. 531 investors - all of whom currently use ETFs and have at least $100K in investable assets - and 260 financial advisors from wirehouse, independent, and RIA channels with at least $50M in assets under management were polled between May 23 and May 31, 2014.

BlackRock, Inc.
Peter McKillop, 212-810-3737
peter.mckillop@blackrock.com
or
Melissa Garville, 212-810-5528
melissa.garville@blackrock.com

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