BlackRock Inc.'s $13.5 billion cash-and-stock deal for Barclays' index fund and iShares makes the New York company the world's largest investment firm, with $2.7 trillion in client assets and lots of clout in pushing companies around as it markets plain-vanilla bond funds, index funds, and also more exotic products. More on the deal from BlackRock here.

BlackRock employs thousands in central New Jersey and hundreds in Wilmington, Del.; Gov. Rendell and Mayor Nutter offered tax breaks last year in as-yet unsuccessful ploy to get some BlackRock jobs for Brandywine Real Estate Trust's proposed Cira 2 tower near Penn.

BlackRock will be bigger than the Federal Reserve, says Bloomberg here.