NW Bancshares recognized twice

Northwest Bancshares, Inc, the parent company of Northwest Savings Bank, based in Warren, has recently been recognized by two national reviewing entities for trustwortyness and investment performance.

The holding company has been recognized by Forbes as one of America’s 50 Most Trustworthy Financial Companies.

In determining the most trustworthy publicly-traded companies in North America, Forbes employs GMI Ratings, an independent proprietary ratings provider and investment advisor. GMI assigns each company an accounting and governance risk score (AGR) based on factors like high-risk events, revenue and expense recognition methods, SEC actions and bankruptcy risk.

The 50 companies named to this year’s list have the highest scores for the past four quarters of the fiscal year.

“If you’re interested in investing in any of the companies on this list, you can be really comfortable that what you’re reading about them is an honest reflection of what’s going on in the company,” says James Kaplan, director of GMI Ratings. “When you read it, you can believe it.”

Northwest has made Forbes’ most trustworthy list three times in the past five years.

“Northwest’s mission is to build loyalty, trust and value among our employees, customers, communities and shareholders,” said William J. Wagner, president and CEO of Northwest Bancshares, Inc. “We look at this recognition by Forbes as validation that our company is achieving success in that endeavor. We are pleased and humbled to receive such an honor.”

At about the same time Northwest Bancshares was also named to the 2013 Bank Honor Roll of superior performers by KBW, Inc., a full-service investment bank that specializes in the financial sector. Northwest is one of only 31 U.S. banking institutions to be named to the Honor Roll this year.

KBW screened nearly 400 publicly-traded banking companies with assets of more than $500 million to assemble the list. To earn Honor Roll status, banks must meet three conditions:

– No annual loss reported in net income per share before extraordinary items over the past 10 years;

– 2013 annual reported net income per share before extraordinary items equal to or greater than peak net income per share over the past ten years; and

– Consecutive increases in net income per share before extraordinary items since 2009.

“We believe it is fair to say that the past decade has been one of the most challenging in the history of U.S. banking, as 496 banks failed during that period,” noted Fred Cannon, KBW director of research. “The Bank Honor Roll is a way for KBW to acknowledge companies that have managed to excel during these tumultuous times and position their companies for further growth in what remains a rate-challenged environment.”

The companies named to the 2013 Bank Honor Roll significantly outperformed the banking industry from 2008-2013 in terms of stock performance.

“We especially appreciate this designation from KBW as it recognizes Northwest’s financial performance over a ten year period,” said William J. Wagner, president and CEO of Northwest Bancshares, Inc. “This marks the fourth consecutive year we have received this award, which we view as a validation of our ongoing commitment to continuous improvement and the enhancement of shareholder value.”