Northrim CEO reassures customers: Bank is strong

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In response to the uncertainty surrounding the banking industry and stock prices on Monday, the chairman and CEO of Northrim Bank reached out to account holders on Monday with a letter describing the bank’s strong position.

“We have always been measured and balanced in how we approach our banking operations. Our conservative strategy includes strong liquidity and credit quality, exceeding the regulatory requirements of a well-capitalized bank, a diversified investment portfolio and the ability to borrow if needed. We continue to monitor the environment and adjust our strategy as necessary,” wrote Joe Schierhorn on Monday afternoon.

Northrim (NRIM) stocks took a dip in early morning trading but recovered most of their value by the end of the day. Friday’s closing price was 48.97, and Monday was $46.34, after a slightly bumpy ride through the trading day. Since it was established in 1990, the bank stock has continued to strengthen.

Monday’s stock journey for Northrim Bank. Top graphic shows the stock performance since the bank’s inception.

Northrim is no stranger to watching the bottom fall out from an economy. It was founded after the stock market crash of 1987, when oil prices dropped to single digits and 13 financial institutions failed across Alaska, displacing customers and opening the way for a group of investors to start Northrim — in a trailer in the middle of a parking lot. The founders raised $8 million to open the bank, which began accepting customers on Dec. 4, 1990.

It grew out of the ashes of a major recession in Alaska, staring with 21 employees, one branch, and its initial $8 million in assets. Today it is a statewide bank with more than $2 billion in assets, still considered small by global banking measures.

Just two weeks ago, Northrim’s board of directors approved a regular quarterly cash dividend of 60 cents per share, a jump of 20% from its prior payout. The dividend, to be paid, Mar 17 to shareholders of record as on Mar 9, is the 11th dividend increase in five years.

By comparison, Silicon Valley Bank, which was closed by regulators on Friday, was among the top 20 American commercial banks, with $209 billion in total assets and $175.4 billion in total deposits at the end of 2022. It was focused on financing more than half of U.S. venture-backed technology, green energy, and bio-tech companies.

Silicon Valley Bank was the nation’s 18th largest, but as account holders rushed to remove their funds, the bank was unable to meet the demand for what became a run on the bank.

Other regional banks folded last week, including Silvergate, Signature Bank of New York, and First Republic.


10 COMMENTS

  1. Is it true or just a cover story while the money disappears? I would hope there are still some honest business people still.

    • Well, according to insider transaction reporting, Northrim CFO Jed Ballard bought 500 shares of Northrim stock yesterday. Not a huge amount, but contrast that to the SVB c-suite dumping their shares earlier this month.

  2. SVIB lobbied for and got the floor for increased regulation raised to $250B, so regulators were not watching SVIB’s $209 B closely. The deposits are all insured by the FDIC, all of the bank deposits lost will be paid by the FDIC and the remaining banks will pay increased premiums, that is how insurance works. The bank investors (stockholders) are wiped out, the SEC is investigating insider trading by the bank managers, who were apparently dumping stock before the bad news hit the street,

  3. All the deposits were NOT insured by the FDIC, only the first $250,000.00. The decision by Biden to cover ALL the deposits is an astronomically BAD idea as it will cause catastrophic failure in the banking system in a larger failure. Most of the companies with deposits in SVB were in excess of $5million. I don’t believe this is over as there are some huge stresses on the banks due to the overleverage in the derivative investment by banks is an environment that has interest rates on the rise. The investors that failed to pull out their investments before Friday lost their remaining investment but many were able to reduce their exposure by pulling out. Ultimately the rescue of the million dollar depositors will fall to the people trying to live their lives on their paychecks.

    • They support Biden’s green/trans agenda. It’s really just that simple.

      Reverse Robin Hood of a sort. Take from the normal, give to the woke.

  4. I was educated to know your banker and form a relationship! I have switched banks when my banker moved to another bank. Yes, I am banking now with Northrim….now we need to push against what most banks shifted to ESG.

    ‘https://www.commercebank.com/about-us/corporate-social-responsibility/esg

    Environment Social Government is destructive control …it might sound good but will one day will your car loan not go thru because its for a gas car, will your house loan be rejected because of a gas stove or it is a single private home with a private yard not a condo in a 15 minute city, could your debt card default because you attempted to donate to a conservative political site like Must Read Alaska.

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