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No Change At The Top

At the end of 1991's second quarter, the top two banks in the state based on total assets are Little Rock institutions, First Commercial Bank and Worthen National Bank of Arkansas.

The largest asset increase was reported by First Commercial.

With assets of $983 million as of June 30, First Commercial showed an increase of $28 million (2.89 percent) over the quarter that ended March 31.

Worthen, with assets of $921 million, posted an asset increase of $26 million (2.86 percent).

City National Bank of Fort Smith couldn't match the dollar increase of the two Little Rock banks, but it had the largest percentage increase. The 5.47 percent increase pushed City National from No. 12 to No. 10 in total assets.

City National's $14.7-million asset gain was due to "normal growth," says Connie Stevenson, a senior vice president.

The increase moved City National ahead of its sister bank, First National Bank of El Dorado, which suffered a 1.47 percent asset drop.

City National and First National are owned by the same holding company, First United Bancshares Inc. of El Dorado.

First National was one of five banks that reported lower assets for the quarter that ended June 30. Little Rock's Union National Bank of Arkansas recorded the largest asset decrease from the first quarter to the second quarter, a drop of 3.84 percent - $537 million to $516 million.

* Worthen National Bank of Hot Springs reported the highest rate of return on equity - 27.17 percent.

* First National Bank of Springdale recorded the highest equity as a percent of total assets - 10.7 percent.

* First National Bank of Conway ranked first in return on assets - 1.85 percent.

Holding Company Quest

Little Rock's First Commercial Corp. and Worthen Banking Corp. continue to accumulate assets by buying failed thrifts. It's part of their quest to be Arkansas' largest bank holding company.

First Commercial Corp., with assets of $2.203 billion, ranked ahead of Worthen Banking Corp., which had assets of $2.186 billion as of June 30.

That was before Worthen announced it had acquired eight North Little Rock branches of One National Bank, boosting its assets to $2.3 billion.

Blue Ribbon Banks

The Bank of Mountain View, with average assets of $58 million, has never made the Arkansas Business list of banks ranked by total assets. However, the Stone County bank ranked first in profitability as of March 31, according to a formula devised by Veribanc, a bank rating service in Wakefield, Mass.

Veribanc chooses banks for "blue ribbon" designation based on a complicated formula with more than a dozen criteria. The rating service even considers financial data from other banks in the holding company.

Three of the basic criteria for banks are:

* Total assets of more than $50 million.

* Equity in excess of 7.5 percent of assets. [Tabular Data Omitted]
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Title Annotation:rankings of Arkansas' banks
Author:Gibson, Carolyn
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Sep 8, 1991
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