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The Outsourced Trading Desk

Outsourced trading to optimize performance from trade execution to settlement

Stay ahead of the unprecedented pressures falling on buy-side trading desks by building an efficient, cost-effective and compliant execution solution.

Investment managers are at a tipping point, faced with structural pressures from multiple sources: rising costs, lower fees, increasing regulation and mounting compliance costs, rapid technology change and more. 

Northern Trust’s Integrated Trading Solution – brought to you by Northern Trust Securities Inc - helps asset owners and asset managers alleviate some of these pressures by outsourcing the trade lifecycle. It is an opportunity to meaningfully lower costs, reduce risk, manage regulatory compliance and enhance transparency and operational efficiency.

By outsourcing trade execution, managers can focus on their core capabilities, their value proposition and their clients, which positions them to compete more effectively in the battle for alpha.

Agency-only execution

Northern Trust Securities Inc (NTSI) is an agency-only broker, acting only on instructions received from clients.  NTSI does not engage in proprietary trading, portfolio management or advice, corporate finance, or investment banking. 

Depth of trading expertise

Our expert teams in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific – the three key trading regions  - offer over 200 years of combined buy and sell-side trading experience across large, mid, small cap, program trading and emerging/frontier markets.

Access to greater liquidity

Our market position as an agency-only broker-dealer within a custody bank means we are able to offer clients access to more than 80 markets and dozens of pools of liquidity around the world.


We are investing in solutions that meet the execution needs of our clients. Our Straight-Through-Processing architecture integrates data flows through front, middle and back office systems – reducing the need for manual intervention and creating operational efficiencies.

Regulatory Oversight

Our independent Compliance team is embedded in our business, to provide oversight, advisory, monitoring, surveillance and reporting activities.

Best Execution

Best Execution matters and we offer a comprehensive reporting and analytics solution to help clients demonstrate execution performance and satisfy their regulatory reporting obligations.

Multi-asset class and instrument coverage

We execute equities, fixed income, currencies, options, ETFs and AIM stocks across 80+ markets and 31 trading venues

Trends in Asset Servicing

Identifying and mitigating conflicts of interest is a fundamental ongoing regulatory obligation of asset managers and asset owners, for themselves and on behalf of the clients for whom they manage assets. In this article Gerard Walsh, Northern Trust’s Global Head of Capital Markets Client Solutions considers agency trading in the context of conflicts of interest.

While the transition to T+1 will offer benefits to investors; it also presents potential challenges as the settlement cycle tightens.

In an evolving landscape, asset managers are seeking outsourcing partners that can provide strength and stability.


The preceding information is intended for one-on-one use with current or prospective clients of Northern Trust. This information is confidential and may not be duplicated in any form or disseminated without prior consent of Northern Trust.

There are risks involved with investing, including possible loss of principal. The information in this communication has been obtained from sources considered reliable, but we do not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. Additional information is available upon request. Financial instruments of the type described herein may involve a high degree of risk and their value may be highly volatile. Such risks include, without limitation, risk of adverse or unanticipated market developments, risk of counterparty or issuer default, risk of adverse events involving any underlying reference obligation or entity, and risk of illiquidity. In some financial instruments, counterparties may lose their entire investment or incur an unlimited loss.

Options involve a high degree of risk, and may be appropriate investments only for sophisticated investors who are capable of understanding and assuming the risks involved. Supporting documentation for any claims, comparisons, recommendations, statistics or other technical data will be supplied upon request. Please read the Options Clearing Corporation's disclosure document: and supplement

The contents of this presentation is not, and should not be construed as, a recommendation, solicitation or offer to buy or sell any securities or related financial products or services. Certain products and services may not be available in all jurisdictions.


Securities products and services are sold by Registered Representatives of Northern Trust Securities, Inc. (member FINRA, SIPC), a wholly owned subsidiary of Northern Trust Corporation.

Northern Trust Transition Management trading performance is compared to average trading performance of ITG's Peer Group Universe, a universe composed of approximately 225 buy side clients and $2.8 trillion of trading on a quarterly basis. All comparisons are based on Implementation Shortfall from order arrival through execution. Costs are denoted as positive values; negative costs represent gains. Only realized trades were included in the Northern Trust Transition Management average cost numbers; no other filtering was applied. Orders with costs greater than the absolute value of 10,000 bps were removed from all of ITG's Peer Group Universe averages. Days to completion represents the average number of full trading days over the order horizon. Micro Cap data is not included as it represents less than 1% of total trade volume for both Northern Trust and the broader ITG Peer Group Universe.

Northern Trust Securities, Inc. (NTSI) is registered in Australia as a foreign corporation and is exempt from the requirement to hold an Australia financial services licence (AFSL) under the Corporations Act. NTSI is authorised and regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission under US laws, which differ from Australian laws.

Best execution is the requirement to take all reasonable steps to obtain the best possible result when executing transactions on your behalf.  Best execution takes into account price, speed, likelihood of execution and settlement, costs, size, and nature of the transaction, or any other consideration relevant to execution. Some of these factors will have a higher priority than others, and the relative importance may alter when appropriate. Determination of such priority will vary, as certain financial instruments trade within differing conditions, and change according to order size and available liquidity. When executing orders on your behalf, Northern Trust Securities, Inc. will take all sufficient steps to achieve Best Execution for your orders.  Northern Trust Securities, Inc. has policies and processes designed to obtain the best possible results on a consistent basis.


Please refer to your Northern Trust Securities, Inc. client statements and confirmations which Northern Trust Securities, Inc. considers an official and accurate record of your account activity.

© 2024 Northern Trust Corporation. Head Office: 50 South La Salle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60603 U.S.A. Incorporated with limited liability in the U.S. Products and services provided by subsidiaries of Northern Trust Corporation may vary in different markets and are offered in accordance with local regulation. For more information, read our legal and regulatory information about individual market offices. This material is directed to professional clients only and is not intended for retail clients. For Asia-Pacific markets, it is directed to expert, institutional, professional or wholesale clients or investors only and should not be relied upon by retail clients or investors. Issued in the United Kingdom by Northern Trust Securities LLP and in Australia by Northern Trust Securities Australia Pty Ltd.

This material is directed to professional clients only and is not intended for retail clients. For Asia-Pacific markets, it is directed to institutional investors, expert investors and professional investors only and should not be relied upon by retail investors.

SEC Rule 606 Report – 1st Qtr, 2016

FINRA Broker Check

Our Clients

Our Asset Servicing group offers services and solutions to a wide range of clientele. Some of our key clients include: