BlackRock CEO says to get firm's backing, companies must contribute to society

Laurence Fink, founder and CEO of investment firm BlackRock, told company executives their businesses need to contribute to society on top of making profits, according to The New York Times.

The largest investor in the world, BlackRock oversees more than $6 trillion in 401(k) plans, mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Times contributor Andrew Ross Sorkin obtained a draft letter of Mr. Fink's statement to executives, which reads, "Society is demanding that companies, both public and private, serve a social purpose."

The note continues, "To prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance, but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society." While profit remains key, Mr. Fink believes carrying out a social purpose is linked to that profit.

Mr. Sorkin writes the call for companies to look past short-term profits toward long-term viability may be a "watershed moment on Wall Street," given the prominence of Mr. Fink's firm. BlackRock staff will be added to monitor how businesses respond to the note, Mr. Sorkin writes.

For the full report, click here.

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