Earlier this year Northern Trust took some flak.
No, it wasn’t that they were in deep financial trouble. They got $1.6 billion in TARP funds but they already paid it back. It was during the period that they held these funds that the flak exploded.
It was about golf — specifically their sponsoring of the Northern Trust Open.
Feb. 25 (Bloomberg) — U.S. lawmakers are asking companies to repay taxpayer money spent on private jets and other perks after Northern Trust Corp., the Chicago-based custody bank that got $1.6 billion, hosted a golf tournament this month.
This hair trigger served to do one thing — expose the hypocrisy of the U.S Congress (from House Head Pelosi’s government provided jet to exclusive dining rooms and the robust menu of nontaxable benefits, all paid by taxpayers).
Fay Vincent writing in the Wall Street Journal says it best —
This is the age-old story of those in sin throwing the first stones. And they do so without shame because they assume we are so ignorant we will not see them as the hypocrites they are.
Hype put aside, the real story about Northern Trust, in terms of financial matters, is a good one. They were not exposed to subprime loans and they were insulated from the declining U.S. economy since they wisely put 50% of their assets in foreign securities. But wait, there’s more. Take a look at their home page.
A few things to note–see “Stable” prominently displayed so you can’t miss it. A wise attempt to distance themselves from the toxic banks.
More importantly a large section of the page is dedicated to providing financial and economic information. Click on Insights & Research and get even more useful information–
You see extensive Financial and Economic intelligence–
- The Daily Global Commentary is outstanding. It gives you a clear description of daily releases of economic information. I am bookmarking this page.
- Go to the left navigation, clock on Personal and see topics such as
Click on these topics to obtain even more information.
The Financial Glossary is a feature that should be on every financial services website.
Go to Podcasts The personal podcasts are good for casual investors but the institutional topics are a storehouse of information for advanced investors.
Kudos to Northern Trust for offering visitors, even if they are not clients, a source of very valuable economic and financial intelligence.
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