BlackRock Announces Changes to Investment Policies for Certain Closed-End Funds.
As a result of these policy changes, the Funds will no longer use Mergent's Dividend Achievers(TM) as the underlying universe for investment in equity securities. Instead, each Fund will broaden its investment guidelines to investing across the broader spectrum of dividend paying equities.
The Funds' current and amended non-fundamental policies are as follows:
Current and Amended Policy
BDV, BDT, BDJ
Under normal market conditions, at least 80% of the Fund's total assets will be invested in equity securities that have been identified as "Dividend Achievers(TM)" by Mergent, Inc., a third-party provider of market data services.
Under normal market conditions, at least 80% of the Fund's total assets will be invested in dividend paying equities.
Under normal market conditions, at least 80% of the Fund's total assets will be invested in equities of small- and mid- capitalization companies that are Dividend Achievers(TM).
Under normal market conditions, at least 80% of the Fund's total assets will be invested in small- and mid- capitalization companies, as defined by the Russell Mid Cap Index.
Similarly, the investment strategy described in the Funds' non-fundamental investment objectives or investment policies, as the case may be for each Fund, has been modified to remove reference to "above average" dividend paying equities.
The Board has taken this action as a consequence of recent market events, during which a number of companies reduced, suspended or failed to raise their dividends over the past several years, resulting in their exclusion from consideration as Dividend Achievers(TM) and reducing the number of available companies for purchase in the Funds. Given the need to raise dividends for at least ten consecutive calendar years, such companies would be excluded from consideration as Dividend Achievers(TM) for the foreseeable future.
In addition to the foregoing, the Board also approved changes to the Funds' restriction on other eligible investments. Previously, the Funds were restricted to investing, under normal market conditions, no more than 20% of their total assets in equity securities that are not identified as Dividend Achievers(TM) by Mergent, Inc. In similar concept to the 80% policy change, the amended policy allows the Funds to invest, under normal market conditions, up to 20% in equity securities of issuers that do not pay dividends.
Each Fund has also removed investment policies limiting the market cap, position size or number of holdings permitted in such Fund.
BDT has removed its policy that under current market conditions, BDT's investment advisor and sub-advisor will consider an issuer with a market capitalization ranking in the bottom 90% of the market capitalization of all issuers included in the Russell 3000 Index to be a small to mid-capitalization company. BDT will now invest at least 80% of its total assets in small to mid-capitalization companies, as defined by the Russell Mid Cap Index.
BDV and BDJ have each removed its policy limiting its maximum weighting of any individual issuer in its portfolio to 5% at the time of purchase. BDT has removed its policy limiting its investments under current market conditions to no more than (i) 2% of its total assets in mid-capitalization issuers; (ii) 1.5% of its total assets in any small/mid-capitalization issuer; and (iii) 0.5% of its total assets in any small capitalization issuer, at the time of purchase.
BDV and BDJ have each removed its policy limiting its portfolio to approximately 60 to 90 issuers from the top 100 highest yielding common stocks in the Dividend Achievers(TM) Universe. BDT has removed its policy limiting its portfolio to approximately 100 small to mid-capitalization companies included in the Russell 3000 Index.
Each Fund will remain subject to the fundamental investment restriction that such Fund may not invest 25% or more of the value of its total assets in any one industry or invest, with respect to 75% of its total assets, more than 5% of the value of its total assets in the securities of any single issuer or purchase more than 10% of the outstanding securities of any one issuer.
As disclosed in its prospectus, each Fund is required to provide shareholders 60 days notice of a change to its current non-fundamental policies described above. Accordingly, a notice describing the changes discussed above will be mailed to shareholders of record as of March 9, 2011. No action is required by shareholders of the Funds in connection with this change.
Upon the completion of the 60-day notice period, each Fund's name will be changed to reflect this change in non-fundamental policy. Each Fund will continue to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under its current ticker symbol even after the name change becomes effective.
BlackRock is a leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services for institutional and retail clients worldwide. At December 31, 2010, BlackRock's AUM was $3.561 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([R])(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([R]). Headquartered in New York City, as of December 31, 2010, the firm has approximately 9,100 employees in 25 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 firm's website at www.blackrock.com
This press release, and other statements that BlackRock may make, may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, with respect to BlackRock's future financial or business performance, strategies or expectations. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words or phrases such as "trend," "potential," "opportunity," "pipeline," "believe," "comfortable," "expect," "anticipate," "current," "intention," "estimate," "position," "assume," "outlook," "continue," "remain," "maintain," "sustain," "seek," "achieve," and similar expressions, or future or conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could," "may" or similar expressions.
BlackRock cautions that forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties, which change over time. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and BlackRock assumes no duty to and does not undertake to update forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in forward-looking statements and future results could differ materially from historical performance.
With respect to each Fund, the following factors, among others, could cause actual events to differ materially from forward-looking statements or historical performance: (1) changes and volatility in political, economic or industry conditions, the interest rate environment, foreign exchange rates or financial and capital markets, which could result in changes in demand for the Fund or in the Fund's net asset value; (2) the relative and absolute investment performance of the Fund and its investments; (3) the impact of increased competition; (4) the unfavorable resolution of any legal proceedings; (5) the extent and timing of any distributions or share repurchases; (6) the impact, extent and timing of technological changes; (7) the impact of legislative and regulatory actions and reforms, including the recently approved Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and regulatory, supervisory or enforcement actions of government agencies relating to the Fund or BlackRock, as applicable; (8) terrorist activities, international hostilities and natural disasters, which may adversely affect the general economy, domestic and local financial and capital markets, specific industries or BlackRock; (9) BlackRock's ability to attract and retain highly talented professionals; (10) BlackRock's success in maintaining secondary market support for the Fund; (11) the impact of BlackRock electing to provide support to its products from time to time; (12) the impact of problems at other financial institutions or the failure or negative performance of products at other financial institutions; and (13) the ability of BlackRock to integrate the operations of Barclays Global Investors.
The Annual and Semi-Annual Reports and other regulatory filings of the Funds with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") are accessible on the SEC's website at www.sec.gov and on BlackRock's website at www.blackrock.com, and may discuss these or other factors that affect the Funds. The information contained on our website is not a part of this press release.
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|Date:||Mar 9, 2011|
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