Northern Trust Corp. will remain the title sponsor of a top professional golf tournament in Los Angeles at least through 2016.

The Chicago company said Friday that it has reached an agreement with the PGA Tour to extend its sponsorship of the Northern Trust Open, held each February at Riviera Country Club, for another four years. Its original five-year contract was set to expire after next year's tournament.

"This is a terrific event that attracts the world's best golfers and supports our business goals," Northern Trust Chief Executive Officer Frederick H. Waddell said in a news release.

In 2009, Northern Trust came under intense criticism from members of Congress for entertaining clients at the event while it held $1.6 billion in funds from the government's Troubled Asset Relief Program. At the time, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank argued that the $84 billion-asset banking company should repay the government for the cost of the event.

But Northern Trust staunchly defended its sponsorship, pointing out that the tournament generates millions of dollars each year for local charities and the Los Angeles economy.

Northern Trust repaid its TARP funds a few months later.

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