While prolonged low interest rates have helped investors in the stock market, they've been devastating for retirees and Americans saving for retirement, BlackRock Chairman and CEO Larry Fink told CNBC on Thursday.
"I do believe low rates hurt savers worldwide," Fink said, a concern he's been talking about for years. The downside of the Federal Reserve's easy monetary policies since the 2008 financial crisis has been ridiculously low rates on savings accounts and bond yields.
Retirees and those nearing retirement have been traditionally advised to reduce their exposure to riskier investments such as stocks in favor of bonds and cash. But in the current investing environment, stocks are being viewed as the only game in town for a decent return.
"Retirement and the fear of retirement is the greatest problem we have in this country," Fink said on "Squawk Box." "As people near retirement, they're getting more frightened, 'I don't have enough savings.' And the compounding effect with this low return is really having a severe impact."
Many people are ill-prepared for the "long 40-year process" of socking away money for their golden years, he said.
The problem is exacerbated by human nature, he added. "People don't really like savings. They like to consume."
As a result, Americans are needed to work longer.
"You see that in the job market. Since the financial crisis, the component where the most jobs have been created for is men and women over 50 because they have to work longer because they don't have the nest egg that they need to live retirement in dignity," Fink said.
Fink said the solution is finding ways to boost economic growth and inflation. That, in turn, would lead the Fed to keep increasing interest rates, leading to a bump in what savers can earn on their money.
BlackRock has $5.1 trillion in assets under management.
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