New Data from BlackRock Investor Watch™ Survey Finds: INVESTORS LOWERING

         37% Not Confident They Will Achieve Needed Retirement Income

   Investors Not Prioritizing Retirement Planning; Spend More Time Planning
                          Vacations Than Retirements

   Stocks Beat Out Bonds or Cash As Most Important Retirement Investments,
                                Investors Say

Business Wire

NEW YORK -- November 15, 2012

Many investors are lowering their expectations for their retirement lifestyle
-- but even those somewhat diminished plans could be at risk because of key
information gaps regarding retirement’s realities combined with insufficient
focus on planning, according to findings released today from the latest
BlackRock (NYSE: BLK) Investor Watch™ survey.

More than four in 10 (42 percent) of non-retired investors say they have
lowered their expectations for the kind of lifestyle they will have in
retirement. Half of investors say either they have pushed their date back to
retire later (15 percent) or are unsure regarding when they will retire (35

At the same time, many investors continue to misunderstand or underestimate
both the financial and demographic realities of retirement, and they also make
retirement planning a relatively low priority.

Just 51 percent of non-retired investors agree (and only 10 percent strongly
agree) that they know how much to save to cover the lifespan of their full
retirement. More than one-third (37 percent) say they are not confident that
they will achieve the annual income they need for the time they expect to be
in retirement.

About one in three expect to spend less than 15 years in retirement – despite
the fact that a healthy couple aged 65 in the U.S. today has a 50 percent
chance that at least one of them will live to the age of 92.* Assuming
retirement at age 65, that translates into 27 years of retirement.

“It’s common for investors to underestimate how much money they will need to
cover themselves for their life when retired,” says Frank Porcelli, head of
BlackRock’s U.S. Retail Business.

“Retirement today is not a single life stage and the new reality is that it
could cover a 25-year period or longer during which time an individual’s
needs, goals and risk tolerance are likely to change.”

The BlackRock survey also suggests that retirement planning does not get all
the focus it deserves: When compared with a list of other common pursuits,
planning for retirement ranks third among things that investors spent the most
time on last year (20 percent), after planning vacations (30 percent) and
exercising at the gym (29 percent).

“It’s understandable that investors are not paying as much attention to
retirement as they ought to, given today’s market uncertainty in addition to
questions about how much they will need, how long they will live or where to
invest,” adds Mr. Porcelli. “But investors don’t have to lower expectations
for life after retirement. One of the most important steps they can take is to
fully educate themselves about the facts of retirement and then ensure that
their savings and investment strategies are fully aligned with those needs.”

Addressing the educational need, earlier this month BlackRock launched The
BlackRock Retirement Center (, which features
practical and relevant age-based content and insights to help individuals
prepare for retirement in what BlackRock has called a “New World of

            Stocks Named Most Important Asset Class in Retirement;
           Most Investors Are “Standing Still” in Their Portfolios

Meeting retirement goals today requires dynamic asset allocation that reflects
the specific goals, risk tolerance and time horizon of each individual
investor. The majority of unretired investors rate stocks (81 percent) as the
most important retirement investment vehicle followed by bonds (60 percent),
cash (57 percent) and annuities (48 percent). But at the same time, four in 10
non-retired investors surveyed by BlackRock agree that they plan to be very
“risk averse” in their retirement investing; four in 10 also agree that they
don’t think there is “a safe way to invest for retirement.”

“It’s good to see investors’ understanding of the importance of equities in
investing for retirement. However, fund flow data tell us that most investors
are underweight equities and overweight traditional core bond holdings and
cash,” noted Mr. Porcelli. “With interest rates at historical lows and the
risk of inflation, investors need to protect and grow their money with
investments that span asset classes and geographies.”

                Knowledge of Income Investments Remains Spotty

Growing appreciation of the value of secure income in retirement is generating
interest in a broader range of asset classes that seek income, given that
interest rates available from traditional fixed income investment remain at
historic lows. Yet, the BlackRock survey shows that many investors still have
a ways to go in understanding the full scope of available income generators.

Almost two thirds – 63 percent – of investors say they are familiar with
income generating investments. However, majorities of investors, both
nonretired and retired, did not correctly identify several such investments as
income generating, including municipal bonds (34 percent identified these as
“income generating”), government bonds (29 percent), money market funds (25
percent), and corporate bonds (25 percent).

Investors were able to most often identify dividend paying stocks as “income
generating” (61 percent). Over the next six months, about one quarter of
investors (24 percent) say that they will increase their portfolio allocation
to dividend producing equities, the investment category most likely to attract
new money.

“Particularly for those near or in retirement, increased longevity gives
investors the ability to ride out market cycles, use a broader range of
investments and keep their money working hard for them over time, said Mr.
Porcelli. “While it’s a good sign that investors are looking at dividend
paying investments, those seeking income would benefit from looking across
sectors and geographies worldwide.”

Though their knowledge has gaps, investors generally do appreciate that income
generation offers benefits at every life stage: 56 percent disagree that these
investments are only for retirees and 60 percent agree that they “make me feel
safer in the current investing environment.”

“The old ways of investing no longer work – and our poll tells us that
investors still need plenty of fundamental support and direction in adjusting
to a new world,” said Mr. Porcelli. “The good news is that help is available,
and new insights and tools are emerging all the time that offer tangible
advantage for investors seeking income, inflation-combating growth, and solid
investment return in a low-yield, slow-growth world.”

Note to Editors: The BlackRock “Investor Watch” research is conducted over the
Internet with support from research firm Market Strategies International. For
this research, conducted in September, 671 investors – 294 retired and 377
nonretired -- were polled between September 26 and October 9, 2012. All of the
investors surveyed work with financial advisors, and all had $250K or more in
investable assets.

*Source: Annuity 2000 Mortality Table, Society of Actuaries.

About BlackRock

BlackRock is a leader in investment management, risk management and advisory
services for institutional and retail clients worldwide. At September 30,
2012, BlackRock’s AUM was $3.673 trillion. BlackRock offers products that span
the risk spectrum to meet clients’ needs, including active, enhanced and index
strategies across markets and asset classes. Products are offered in a variety
of structures including 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 September 30, 2012, the firm has approximately 10,400
employees in 29 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


Jessica Greaney, 212-810-5498
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