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GUARDIAN BANCORP REPORTS RESULTS

 LOS ANGELES, Feb. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Paul M. Harris, chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Guardian Bancorp (AMEX: GB), parent company of Guardian Bank, reported that the company's 1992 net loss was $1.8 million, or $.45 per share, compared to net earnings of $3.7 million, or $.88 per share a year earlier. For the three months ended Dec. 31, 1992, the net loss was $3.7 million, or $.93 per share, compared to net earnings of $152,000, or $.04 per share, during the same period in 1991.
 The net loss for the 12 and three months ended Dec. 31, 1992, is principally attributable to increased provisions for possible loan losses. Recent economic reports suggest that the economy's decline may have bottomed out and that 1993 will be a year of modest growth both nationally and at the state level. However, the economic recovery in California, particularly in Southern California, is expected to lag behind that of other regions of the country. Based upon its revised evaluation of its marketplace, management strengthened the balance sheet through increased reserves which was considered appropriate in the circumstances. During the 12 and three-month period ended Dec. 31, 1992, the company provided $9.4 million and $6.5 million to the allowance for possible loan losses, respectively, which compared to provisions of $5.9 million and $2.4 million, respectively, during the same periods in 1991. Net loan charge-offs during 1992 were $5.1 million, compared to $284,000 in 1991. During the fourth quarter of 1992 and 1991, net loan charge-offs were $3.4 million and $160,000, respectively. The company's allowance for possible loan losses at Dec. 31, 1992 was $13.5 million, or 3.55 percent of loans, net of deferred loan fees, compared to $9.1 million, or 2.13 percent, respectively, at the close of 1991.
 A measure of a company's strength to endure the short-term challenges of any economic cycle is its capital. The company was pleased to report at Dec. 31, 1992, both the company's and the bank's capital and related capital ratios exceeded all minimum applicable regulatory requirements. At Dec. 31, 1992, the company's Tier 1 capital, total capital and leverage ratios were 8.27 percent, 10.20 percent and 5.49 percent, respectively, and the bank's ratios were 8.42 percent, 10.38 percent and 5.36 percent, respectively.
 At Dec. 31, 1992, the company's total assets; loans, net of deferred loan fees; and deposits were $651.8 million, $379 million and $600 million, respectively, which compares to $728.2 million, $429.2 million and $682.6 million, respectively, at Dec. 31, 1991. Management entered 1992 with the strategic objective of decreasing the size of the company from prior-year's levels given lower loan demand, loan diversification goals and loan administrative needs brought on by the current economic downturn. Despite the decline in total assets at Dec. 31, 1992, the company increased its percentage of earning assets to total assets at Dec. 31, 1992 to 87 percent, compared to 85 percent at the close of 1991.
 Non-performing loans decreased $7.7 million at Dec. 31, 1992, from the amounts reported at Sept. 30, 1992. At Dec. 31, 1992, loans on non-accrual and loans past due 90 days or more and still accruing interest were $21.5 million and $1.5 million, respectively, which compared to $28.9 million and $1.8 million, respectively, at Sept. 30, 1992. The vast majority of the company's non-performing loans are secured by first trust deeds on a diverse portfolio of real estate located throughout Southern California. The company's allowance for possible loan losses expressed as a percentage of non- performing loans, which is commonly referred to as the coverage ratio, increased significantly to 58.4 percent at Dec. 31, 1992, from 33.8 percent and 31.7 percent at Sept. 30, 1992, and Dec. 31, 1991, respectively. Real state owned, which is carried at the lower of cost or estimated fair value, was approximately $16.2 million, and $4.7 million at Dec. 31, 1992, and Sept. 30, 1992, respectively.
 Significant progress has been made in the company's program to enhance and strengthen its strategic position within its Southern California marketplace. This ongoing program, launched in late 1991 and currently ongoing, involves among other things, restricting new construction lending, while fully supporting existing real estate loan commitments; seeking new commercial business loans to diversify the loan portfolio; developing new deposit products and services; maintaining current capital levels; monitoring and reducing problem assets; updating various operating policies and procedures; and, monitoring non-interest expense.
 The company reported that Guardian Trust Co., which commenced operations in June 1991, is now operating profitably and sees this bank subsidiary making continued contributions in the future as it adds to its impressive client list.
 The following table presents the summarized consolidated balance sheet information at Dec. 31, 1992 and 1991 and summarized consolidated results of operations for the three and 12 months ended Dec. 31, 1992 and 1991 (dollars in thousands, except per share data):
 Dec. 31,
 1992 1991
 Cash and due from banks $49,853 $86,769
 Federal funds sold 60,600 115,000
 Investments in securities 146,826 89,631
 Loans, net of deferred loan fees 379,018 429,246
 Allowance for possible loan losses (13,466) (9,135)
 Other assets 28,955 16,647
 Total $651,786 $728,158
 Deposits $599,903 $682,627
 Subordinated debt and other
 borrowed money 13,000 3,000
 Other liabilities 2,420 4,746
 Shareholders' equity 36,463 37,785
 Total $651,786 $728,158
 12 months ended Three months ended
 Dec. 31, Dec. 31,
 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Interest income $41,338 $50,225 $9,198 $12,717
 Net interest income 32,327 35,891 7,314 9,128
 Provision for
 loan losses 9,395 5,946 6,500 2,423
 Non-interest income 997 921 333 308
 Non-interest expense 26,356 24,749 6,792 6,826
 Income tax provision
 (benefit) (601) 2,407 (1,953) 35
 Net earnings (loss) (1,826) 3,710 (3,692) 152
 Net earnings (loss)
 per share (.45) .88 (.93) .04
 Guardian Bancorp is the holding company for Guardian Bank, member FDIC, an independent commercial bank headquartered in Los Angeles, with branches in Fountain Valley and Ontario, Calif. Guardian Trust Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Guardian Bank operates from its headquarters in Los Angeles and offers custodial trust services to labor union and management trust fund customers.
 -0- 2/19/93
 /CONTACT: Paul M. Harris, chairman and CEO of Guardian Bancorp, 213-239-0800/
 (GB)


CO: Guardian Bancorp ST: California IN: FIN SU: ERN

MS-JL -- LA029 -- 8514 02/19/93 16:12 EST
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Date:Feb 19, 1993
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