February 25th, 2009
11:00 AM ET
13 years ago

Bailed-out bank enjoys concerts, dinners, parties

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/02/25/bank.party/art.northern.trust.gi.jpg caption="Northern Trust sponsored a Professional Golf Association tournament and associated client events."]
(CNN) - A bank that received $1.6 billion dollars of the government's bailout money sponsored what reports are calling a lavish series of events in Los Angeles, California, last weekend.

Watch: Bailed-out bank has a blowout

Northern Trust, based in Chicago, Illinois, spent an undisclosed amount of money sponsoring a Professional Golf Association tournament and associated client events, including concerts, dinners and parties, according to celebrity Web site TMZ.com.

The bank spent millions of dollars on the event, which included - on top of the sponsorship costs of the Northern Trust Open tournament - concerts by Sheryl Crow and Earth Wind & Fire, a private party at music venue House of Blues and gift bags from Tiffany & Co., the Web site said.

According to TMZ.com's report, employees and clients attending the tournament dined on seared salmon and petite Angus filet and stayed at some of Los Angeles' most elegant and expensive hotels.

Doug Holt, senior vice president of communication for Northern Trust, confirmed to CNN that his bank sponsored the tournament and its events but, he said, not at taxpayer expense.

Full story

Filed under: TARP
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. single mom

    Answer is easy – no more funds for them as they obviously don't need it.

    February 25, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  2. no corporate politics

    Thanks Obama! Anyone can Google for the federal list of Obama's donors which include a LOT of financial corporations!

    Thanks for the PAYBACK in not going after them – except in preppy-speak that does nothing.

    February 25, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. Riaz

    Oh yea... they thought it is a stimulus package to spend on Entertainment Economy !!! Close this bank!!!

    February 25, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  4. Debby

    Hey the Obama's are taking another vacation so I guess we really can't criticize the banks on spending.

    February 25, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  5. Dave in Arizona

    They should hire Sarah Palin to come and dance..

    February 25, 2009 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  6. Donna from Colorado Springs

    From this day forward, ANY BANK who comes begging for money should be told NO WAY...........NO MORE MONEY!!

    February 25, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  7. arithmetic is liberal


    February 25, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  8. Eric M

    Bear in mind that not every bank that was forced to accept TARP funds was in trouble.

    Additionally, sponsoring of sporting events is considered marketing. The point is to get your brand into the public eye. Large events set up sponsorship deals months or even years in advance.

    Up next on the ticker, Frank from accounting ordered EXTRA CHEESE on the pizza at the company Xmas party1!!

    February 25, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  9. Maggie in NY

    Baffled...maybe you need a calculator. Multiply 304,000,000 times $1,000,000. The answer is not 1 trillion ($1,000,000,000,000), it is more like $304,000,000,000,000 ($304 trillion). Nice idea, though...

    February 25, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |

    By no means am I saying that this is okay, but in business you must give the impression that you are doing okay. Who is going to invest if you annual dinner is called off, or a concert that was planned is cancelled. Perception becomes reality and when you begin, as a business, to give the perception that you're broke, guess what, you'll be broke.

    February 25, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |


    February 25, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  12. arithmetic is liberal

    If you steal a $16,000 from a bank, you go to jail and eat salsbury steak.

    If a bank steals $1.6 billion from you, they go to a golf tournament and eat Angus filet.

    Ain't life grand?

    February 25, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  13. Independent_me



    February 25, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |

    @STILL HOPING, You are an idiot, how did we get into this mess, or have you forgotton. Who gave the 1st bailout money and to date we don't really know how it was spent? You say Obama is a thief and stole from the American Taxpayers, WELL LET ME JUST SAY THIS, THE BILLIONS OF $ SPENT IN IRAQ WHO DID THAT AND FOR WHAT NOT WMD BUT FOR OIL. PRESIDENT OBAMA HASN'T STOLEN FAMILIES LOVED ONE WHO DIED IN THE IRAQ WAR LIKE THE PAST ADMINISTRATION DID YOU IDIOT

    February 25, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  15. Sharon - NC

    The money for that party should be returned to the government and Northern Trust should have to account for every other penny they've spent (theirs or the government's), and return any sums that are misspent. And the CEO of that bank should be charged with fraud for accepting the bailout money and partying with it.

    February 25, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  16. Dolores

    Has this bank taken or do they plan to take advance of ANY of the federal funding in the future.
    Who do they think they are kidding. The american people have been swindled by the banks and investment professionals. It is time for them to pay the price.

    i want our government to put VERY STRICK controls on all the companies. Somehow we have got to get restraint and responsibility. If the can't bring that to the table themselves then they have to be forced to have it by the government.

    February 25, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  17. Kevin

    The gov't should seize back every dime of that money right now, plus the millions that were spent for that crap. WITH INTEREST! Sink or swim Northern Trust!

    February 25, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  18. maria

    They should have to return the money back with interest, just like they do and the credit card companys do the the average joe.

    February 25, 2009 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  19. Ken


    I am fed up with the banks thinking that they can screw us ENOUGH is ENOUGH!

    February 25, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  20. Tim

    Northern Trust didnt even want the bailout money, they were "asked" to take it. The bank is actually run pretty well and they have solid financial numbers compared to other banks like Citi and banks on the edge.

    February 25, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  21. Angie in Pa


    February 25, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  22. cq

    The govt is giving the money to the wrong people ! I bet the execs got a nice bonus !! They should be in jail for fraud.

    February 25, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  23. Helen

    I am disgusted about this. They should all be put in jail. This just goes to show that all the big shots care about is their own pockets and they forget about everyone else. I wonder how many other banks are doing the same?

    February 25, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  24. Outraged

    W had threatened martial law unless TARP was approved. There were no strings attached, and virtually no accountability....

    Why hasn't this little tidbit received more press?

    February 25, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  25. Eric in Houston

    What do those who are criticising corporate travel and events have against the little people who work in the travel and hospitality industries? When these events are cut back, the people who suffer and are likely to be laid off are the waiters, maids, bellmen, clerks, etc. These aren't the highest paying jobs in the world, but they are jobs and any restriction on such events acts as an anti-stimulus to these people. Employee benefits and advertising, within reason, are legitimate business expenses and in the best interest of the economy.

    February 25, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
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