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ASB Declares Cash Distribution

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio, Nov. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- ASB Financial Corp. (Nasdaq: ASBP) announced today that its Board of Directors has declared a cash distribution of $5.00 per share, payable on December 30, 1996, to shareholders of record on December 9, 1996. Under Nasdaq rules, because the amount of distribution is expected to be more than 25% of the value of ASB's common shares, the "ex-dividend date" for the distribution will be December 31, 1996.

Based on preliminary operating results, ASB estimates that approximately $.20 of the distribution will be a taxable cash dividend and the remaining $4.80 will be a non-taxable return of capital. The return of capital will result in a reduction in the cost basis of each outstanding common share of ASB. The exact allocation between the taxable and non-taxable portions of the distribution will be determined after December 31, 1996, when the company's operating results have been determined for the 1996 tax year. Notices will be mailed to ASB shareholders in January advising them of the allocation. Shareholders are advised to consult with their personal tax advisors in connection with their personal income tax situation.

The decision to treat part of the distribution as a return of capital is based on an opinion that ASB has received from its tax accountants. Due to the complexities of ASB's individual circumstances, a private letter ruling from the Internal Revenue Service could not be obtained.

Gerald Jenkins, President of ASB commented "We have been advised that there are many factors that go into a decision by the IRS whether or not to issue a private letter ruling to a particular applicant, and the IRS has unlimited discretion in deciding when it will or will not issue a private letter ruling. We have also been advised that the absence of a private letter ruling is not dispositive of the issues effecting the tax treatment of this distribution. While a private letter ruling would have been desirable, the Board of Directors believes that proceeding with this distribution in reliance on the opinion of our tax accountants is appropriate under the circumstances."

ASB Financial Corp. is the holding company for American Savings Bank, fsb, which has served the Portsmouth, Ohio area since 1892. At September 30, 1996, ASB had assets of $114.3 million and shareholder's equity of $25.3 million.

SOURCE ASB Financial Corp.
 -0- 11/26/96

/CONTACT: Gerald R. Jenkins, President, of ASB Financial Corp., 614-354-3177/


CO: ASB Financial Corp. ST: Ohio IN: FIN SU: DIV

TC-CS -- CLTU024 -- 4303 11/26/96 10:40 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 26, 1996
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