Northwestern Mutual Encourages Americans to 'Live Confidently' 

2011 Annual Report Underscores Company's Financial Strength and Industry-Leading Dividends

Northwestern Mutual offers a personal perspective on the value of planning in its online, interactive Annual Report, which outlines the enduring financial strength and stability of the 155-year-old mutual company. Real-life client success stories – delivered in short videos – accompany the report.

"In a time marked by a sluggish worldwide economy, flat equity returns and falling interest rates, Northwestern Mutual declared the second-highest policyowner dividend in our 155-year history. We are a mutual company, and this dividend payout is a striking demonstration of our commitment to manage the company for the benefit of our policyowners," writes John E. Schlifske, chairman and chief executive officer of Northwestern Mutual, in his opening letter.

A series of four short videos help viewers get to know the company better through the eyes of its clients:

  • A Strategic Approach: A business owner partners with Northwestern Mutual to protect his business and plan for the long-term financial security of his family.

  • An Early Start: Developing a financial roadmap helps one family balance short-term goals, like taking family vacations, with long-term goals, like funding college for their two children.

  • A Lasting Gift: A mother's planning provides comfort for the family during her fight against cancer, and after her death.

  • A Plan for the Future: One couple builds a long-term relationship with their Northwestern Mutual financial representative and addresses their financial security one step at a time.

Since 1907, the Policyowners' Examining Committee (POEC) – a group of three to five policyowners – is given unrestricted access to the company to independently evaluate operations, management and strategic plans. In the 2011 report, the committee was, "impressed by the company's active risk management culture and vigilance in identifying and managing risks that could affect the company's strength and stability."