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SOUTHERN NATIONAL REPORTS STRONG FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS

 SOUTHERN NATIONAL REPORTS STRONG FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS
 LUMBERTON, N.C., April 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern National (NYSE: SNB) today announced that net income for the first quarter of 1992 was $10.1 million, a 50 percent increase over earnings for the same quarter last year. The earnings per share on a comparative basis and related increases were comprised of the following:
 First Quarter Increase
 1992 1991 $ Pct.
 Primary $.41 $.30 $.11 37
 Fully diluted .39 .30 .09 30
 The higher earnings were attributable primarily to a 30 percent increase in net interest income. An improvement in net yield from 4.40 percent in the prior year to 4.87 percent and a 16 percent growth in average earning assets favorably impacted net interest income. Return on average assets was 1.03 percent compared to .79 percent last year.
 Nonperforming assets, including nonaccrual loans and foreclosed property, declined for the fourth consecutive quarter, from $57.7 million at March 31, 1991 to $39.9 million at March 31, 1992, or from 2.56 percent to 1.51 percent of loan-related assets.
 The provision for loan losses for the first quarter was $4.1 million, a 26 percent decrease from the provision in the 1991 period. Net charge-offs amounted to .63 percent of average loans and leases, net of unearned income, compared to .71 percent last year. The allowance as a percent of loans and leases was 1.26 percent at the end of the first quarter of 1992. The ratio of the allowance to nonaccrual loans improved significantly, from .85 at March 31,1991 to 3.10 at March 31, 1992.
 "We are very pleased with our first quarter results," said Chairman Glenn Orr, "and credit the entire Southern National team with our success. First quarter earnings were on target with the corporation's operating plan. Based on current economic conditions, we expect this trend to continue."
 Total assets at March 31, 1992 were $4.3 billion compared to $3.4 billion at the end of the first quarter of 1991. Deposits increased 22 percent to $3.5 billion at March 31, 1992, and net loans and leases grew 18 percent to $2.6 billion.
 In February 1992, Southern National completed a $77 million offering of 6.75 percent convertible preferred stock. The issue was sold at $25 per depositary share, with each share convertible into 1.4767 shares of common stock. Shareholders' equity at March 31, 1992 was $350 million, a 60 percent increase over the 1991 balance of $219 million. Book value per common share was $10.97 compared to $9.66 last year.
 On March 20, 1992, Southern National merged with Workmen's Bancorp, Inc. in a transaction accounted for as a purchase. Workmen's, with branches in Mount Airy, Sparta, King and Pilot Mountain, was merged into Southern National Bank of North Carolina. At merger, Workmen's had assets of $263 million, deposits of $219 million and loans of $193 million.
 The corporation's leverage capital ratio at March 31, 1992 was 8.78 percent , up from 6.22 percent at December 31, 1991. Chairman Orr reported, "This increase in our leverage capital ratio was the result of the Workmen's merger as well as the $77 million stock issue. This makes our balance sheet stronger than it has ever been and positions us very well for future growth."
 Southern National operates 153 offices in 83 cities and towns in North and South Carolina.
 SOUTHERN NATIONAL CORPORATION
 FINANCIAL SUMMARY
 (Unaudited)
 Three Months Ended Percent
 (Dollars in thousands March 31,
 except per share data) 1992 1991
 Increase (Decrease)
 RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
 Interest income:
 Interest and fees on
 loans and leases $ 58,430 $ 60,090 (3)
 Interest and dividends
 on securities 20,923 17,837 17
 Interest on temporary
 investments 961 661 45
 Total interest income 80,314 78,588 2
 Interest expense:
 Interest on deposits 33,307 39,597 (16)
 Interest on short-term
 borrowings 3,591 5,318 (32)
 Interest on long-term debt 578 665 (13)
 Total interest expense 37,476 45,580 (18)
 Net interest income 42,838 33,008 30
 Provision for loan
 and lease losses 4,050 5,468 (26)
 Noninterest income:
 Service charges on
 deposit accounts 5,766 5,065 14
 Nondeposit fees and
 commissions 3,456 2,950 17
 Securities gains, net 6 554 (99)
 Other income 1,205 2,766 (56)
 Total noninterest income 10,433 11,335 (8)
 Noninterest expense:
 Personnel expense 17,185 15,421 11
 Occupancy and
 equipment expense 4,683 4,376 7
 Federal deposit
 insurance expense 1,817 1,322 37
 Other expense 10,553 8,193 29
 Total noninterest expense 34,238 29,312 17
 Provision for income taxes 4,900 2,859 71
 Net income $ 10,083 $ 6,704 50
 PER SHARE
 Net income
 Primary $ 0.41 $ 0.30 37
 Fully diluted 0.39 0.30 30
 Weighted average
 shares outstanding
 Primary 23,059,996 22,695,671
 Fully diluted 25,912,997 22,716,560
 Cash dividends $ 0.12 $ 0.11 9
 PERFORMANCE RATIOS
 Return on average assets 1.03 pct. 0.79 pct.
 Return on average common
 shareholders' equity 15.44 12.35
 Net yield on earning assets
 (fully taxable equivalent) 4.87 4.40
 As of/For the
 Quarter Ended
 (Dollars in thousands
 except per share data) 3/31/1992 12/31/1991 3/31/1991
 ASSET QUALITY RATIOS (Percent)
 Nonaccrual loans and leases as
 percent of loans and leases 0.41 0.71 1.50
 Nonperforming assets as
 percent of:
 Total assets 0.93 1.14 1.68
 Loans and leases plus
 foreclosed property 1.51 1.76 2.56
 Net charge-offs as percent of
 average loans and leases 0.63 0.63 0.71
 Allowance for losses as percent
 of loans and leases 1.26 1.27 1.27
 Ratio of allowance for losses to:
 Net charge-offs 2.11 x 2.03 x 1.79 x
 Nonaccrual loans and leases 3.10 1.80 0.85
 AVERAGE BALANCES
 Securities $1,096,898 $ 970,556 $ 878,820
 Loans and leases 2,456,917 2,395,481 2,221,483
 Earning assets 3,651,257 3,418,300 3,144,278
 Total assets 3,930,735 3,695,909 3,392,390
 Deposits 3,222,423 3,205,061 2,786,333
 Short-term borrowings 362,324 196,546 325,476
 Interest-bearing liabilities 3,231,665 3,046,594 2,802,146
 Shareholders' equity 283,471 233,404 217,214
 NOTE: All line items referring to loans and leases
 reflect loans and leases, net of unearned income.
 -0- 4/9/92
 /CONTACT: MEDIA - Bob Denham, 919-671-2427, or ANALYSTS - John R. Spruill, Chief Financial Officer, 919-671-2530, both of Southern National Corporation/
 (SNB) CO: Southern National Corporation ST: North Carolina IN: FIN SU: ERN


DF -- CH001 -- 6588 04/09/92 08:49 EDT
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