Every time Thomson Reuters (NASDAQ: TRIN) CEO Tom Glocer has cause to speak publicly, he tries to put the worsening Wall St. crisis in as good a light as possible for his company. The need to remind that Thomson Reuters is more than just a provider of data terminals to Wall St. banks has just been ratcheted up by an order of magnitude. Speaking at Goldman's Communacopia conference, Glocer called the company "the leading electronic professional publisher"and those professions include all kinds of industries, like legal, healthcare and scientific. Still, it's impossible to ignore the events of this week, which he called "a major sea shift". Even still, Glocer said the markets business can still grow if the latest events (Fannie, Freddie, AIG, Lehman, Merill) represent the culmination. On the other hand: "If we're headed into the 1930s, and we're headed into a long-term world depression; it will put a dent into professional services."
Either way, Glocer argued that terminals "are only part of the story" and that the company is doing more business in what he called plumbing for the enterprise : "The data feeds that come into the basement at 85 Broad st". 85 Broad is the address of Goldman Sachs HQ. As for the aforementioned legal business, Glocer called it counter-cyclical (the second time we heard that phrase today). On the Lehman mess, he offered optimistically: "You can't even count the hours that are being spent there."
By Joseph Weisenthal