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EARNINGS AND PROFITABILITY AT CBSI ACHIEVE RECORDS

 SYRACUSE, N.Y., Jan. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Community Bank System, Inc. (CBSI), a DeWitt-based bank holding company with nearly $670 million in assets, has announced that net income for the fourth quarter 1992 reached an all-time high of $2.1 million or $.77 per share, more than three times the amount for the comparable 1991 period. For all of 1992, earnings rose 104 percent over last year to $7.506 million or $2.76 per share.
 Sanford A. Belden, president and chief executive officer, stated that these results reflect the fourth consecutive quarter of rising earnings since the company's major restructuring of its five formerly independent commercial banks into a single statewide bank. Return on assets and return on shareholder equity rose to 1.15 percent and 14.69 percent, respectively, for the year, exceeding the company's previous records set in the mid-1980s.
 The primary reasons for better fourth quarter and full year performance compared to last year were a sharply higher net interest margin, largely because of the continued decline in rates paid on deposits due to the still slow economy; greater average earning assets for the quarter (up 4.3 percent) and full year (up 2.5 percent), fueled by an expanded savings and demand deposit base and higher short-term borrowings; lower one-time costs, including the absence of restructuring expense; and concerted control over recurring overhead expense, which was 2 percent lower for the quarter and up 5.4 percent for the full year. Non-performing loans were reduced by 31 percent from twelve months earlier to an extremely favorable .44 percent of loans outstanding, being very amply covered by 3.1 times in loan loss reserves.
 CBSI is a registered bank holding company based in DeWitt, N.Y. Its wholly-owned subsidiary, Community Bank, N.A., has 32 branches located throughout Northern New York, the Finger Lakes Region, the Southern Tier, and Southwestern New York, as well as a representative office in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
 COMMUNITY BANK SYSTEM, INC.
 SUMMARY OF OPERATIONS
 (000's omitted)
 THREE MONTHS ENDED DEC. 31,
 Change
 1992 1991 Amount Percent
 Net interest income $9,620 $8,213 $1,407 17.1
 Loan loss provision 1,103 614 489 79.6
 Net interest income after
 provision for loan losses 8,517 7,599 918 12.1
 Other income 995 1,059 (64) (6.0)
 Other expense 6,423 7,747 (1,324) (17.1)
 Restructuring expense 0 1,380 (1,380) (100.0)
 Income before income tax 3,089 911 2,178 239.1
 Income tax 989 223 766 343.5
 Net income $2,100 $ 688 $1,412 205.2
 Return on assets (pct) 1.26 0.43 0.83pts --
 Return on equity (pct) 15.67 5.70 9.97pts --
 Net interest margin (pct) 6.32 5.55 0.77pts --
 Weighted average common shares 2,736 2,695 41 1.5
 Earnings per share $ 0.77 $ 0.25 $ 0.52 207.1
 Non-performing loans/loans (net
 of unearned discount) (pct) 0.44 0.67 (0.23)pts --
 Cash dividends declared per
 common share $ 0.25 $ 0.19 $ 0.06 31.6
 Tier I leverage ratio (pct) 7.90 7.49 0.41pts --
 Book Value: Total $19.81 $17.93 $ 1.88 10.5
 Tangible $19.58 $17.58 $ 2.00 11.4
 TWELVE MONTHS ENDED DEC. 31,
 Change
 1992 1991 Amount Percent
 Net interest income $35,585 $30,410 $5,175 17.0
 Loan loss provision 2,727 2,516 211 8.4
 Net interest income after
 provision for loan losses 32,858 27,894 4,964 17.8
 Other income 4,235 3,739 496 13.3
 Other expense 26,448 24,575 1,873 7.6
 Restructuring expense 0 2,090 (2,090) (100.0)
 Income before income tax 10,645 4,968 5,677 114.3
 Income tax 3,139 1,296 1,843 142.2
 Net income $7,506 $3,672 $3,834 104.4
 Return on assets (pct) 1.15 0.59 0.56pts --
 Return on equity (pct) 14.69 7.78 6.91pts --
 Net interest margin (pct) 5.96 5.29 0.67pts --
 Weighted average common shares 2,722 2,594 28 1.0
 Earnings per share $ 2.76 $ 1.36 $ 1.40 102.7
 Non-performing loans/loans (net
 of unearned discount) (pct) 0.44 0.67 (0.23)pts --
 Cash dividends declared per
 common share $ 0.90 $ 0.76 $ 0.14 18.4
 Tier I leverage ratio (pct) 7.90 7.49 0.41pts --
 Book Value: Total $19.81 $17.93 $ 1.88 10.5
 Tangible $19.58 $17.58 $ 2.00 11.4
 Change
 Amount Percent
 Total Assets at Dec. 31, 1992 559,274 34,782 5.48
 Total Assets at Dec. 31, 1991 634,492 16,641 2.69
 Total Assets at Dec. 31, 1990 617,851 -- --
 -0- 1/25/93
 /CONTACT: David G. Wallace, S.V.P. and chief financial officer, Community Bank System, Inc., 315-445-2282/


CO: Community Bank System, Inc. ST: New York IN: FIN SU: ERN

BM -- CL019 -- 8721 01/25/93 16:46 EST
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Date:Jan 25, 1993
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