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SOUTHERN NATIONAL REPORTS QUARTERLY EARNINGS UP 68 PERCENT

 SOUTHERN NATIONAL REPORTS QUARTERLY EARNINGS UP 68 PERCENT
 LUMBERTON, N.C., Oct. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern National Corporation (NYSE: SNB) today announced its earnings for the third quarter.
 FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 -- Net income for the quarter was $14.0 million
 - A 68 pct. increase over the $8.3 million earned in 3rd
 Qtr. 1991
 -- Fully-diluted income per share for the quarter was $.47
 - A 31 pct. increase over the 3rd Qtr. 1991 results of $.36
 - Compared to $.41 for the 2nd Qtr. 1992
 -- Fully-diluted income per share year-to-date was $1.27
 - A 30 pct. increase over the year-to-date 1991 results of
 $.98
 -- Net yield on earning assets for the quarter was 5.05 pct.
 - Compared to 4.96 pct. for the 3rd Qtr. 1991
 - Compared to 4.97 pct. for the 2nd Qtr. 1992
 -- Nonperforming assets were $35.9 million
 - 1.27 pct. of loan-related assets
 - Declined for the 6th consecutive quarter
 -- Key performance ratios for the quarter
 - Return on average common equity was 17.65 pct.
 - Return on average assets was 1.26 pct.
 -- Charge-offs for the quarter were $2.5 million
 - Reflects a .37 pct. annualized rate
 - Compared to $2.9 million in 2nd Qtr. 1992, an
 annualized rate of .44 pct.
 -- Average loan growth over 2nd Qtr. 1992
 - $84 million, or 13 pct. annualized, as stated
 - $60 million, or 9 pct. annualized, without impact of
 purchase acquisitions
 -- Average year-to-date loan growth over 1991
 - $329 million, or 14 pct., as stated
 - $141 million, or 6 pct., without impact of purchase
 acquisitions
 -- No significant securities gains reflected in 1992 earnings
 -- Additional financial data are contained in the
 accompanying tables
 "We consider this to have been a very successful quarter," said Chairman Glenn Orr. "Reasonable loan growth and margin improvement were the major drivers for our earnings increase from the second to third quarter.
 "We are very pleased that our nonaccrual loans, as well as total nonperforming assets, declined again this quarter. We believe that further improvements are possible. As a result of the continuing decline in nonperforming assets, we anticipate that charge-offs and foreclosed property expense in 1993 will be lower than in 1992," Orr said.
 Loan growth in the quarter was evenly balanced between commercial and consumer and was all from the Carolinas. Chairman Orr stated "This growth indicates that the economies of the Carolinas are stronger than that of the United States taken as a whole. Also, our business development and retention programs are working well for us."
 Book value per common share was $11.65, compared to $10.12 in 1991, a 15 pct. increase. Assuming full conversion of the preferred stock, book value at September 30, 1992 would have been $12.36.
 Southern National's risk-based capital ratios were substantially higher than the minimums prescribed by the regulatory agencies. Tier 1, total capital and leverage ratios at September 30, 1992 were approximately 13.4 pct., 14.8 pct. and 8.1 pct., respectively. Based upon these ratios, Southern National would be in the highest rated category of the FDIC's new risk assessment system which becomes effective January 1, 1993, and therefore entitled to the lowest level of assessment rates. Under the new system, deposit insurance rates would range from $.23 to $.31 per one hundred dollars of deposits.
 On September 30, 1992, Southern National filed a Registration Statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission covering the proposed acquisition of FedFirst Bancshares, Inc. of Winston-Salem. The transaction, expected to be completed in the first quarter of 1993, is subject to approval by regulators and shareholders.
 Southern National, a $4.5 billion multi-bank holding company, operates 152 offices in 82 cities and towns in the Carolinas.
 SOUTHERN NATIONAL CORPORATION
 FINANCIAL SUMMARY
 (Unaudited)
 Nine Months Ended
 (Dollars in thousands September 30, Percent
 except per share data) 1992 1991 Change
 RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
 Interest income:
 Interest and fees on
 loans and leases $ 182,704 $ 185,417 (1) pct.
 Interest and dividends
 on securities 68,770 51,067 35
 Interest on temporary
 investments 1,792 1,651 9
 Total interest income 253,266 238,135 6
 Interest expense:
 Interest on deposits 98,450 115,246 (15)
 Interest on short-term
 borrowings 11,100 13,062 (15)
 Interest on long-term debt 1,653 1,881 (12)
 Total interest expense 111,203 130,189 (15)
 Net interest income 142,063 $ 107,946 32
 Provision for loan
 and lease losses 11,256 14,595 (23)
 Noninterest income:
 Service charges on
 deposit accounts 17,709 15,898 11
 Nondeposit fees and
 commissions 10,864 9,489 14
 Securities gains, net 1 1,459 (100)
 Other income 3,162 3,724 (15)
 Total noninterest income 31,736 30,570 4
 Noninterest expense:
 Personnel expense 54,180 47,085 15
 Occupancy and
 equipment expense 15,070 13,214 14
 Federal deposit
 insurance expense 5,717 4,262 34
 Foreclosed property expense 6,592 3,974 66
 Other expense 26,005 22,968 13
 Total noninterest expense 107,564 91,503 18
 Provision for income taxes 18,656 10,150 84
 Net income $ 36,323 $ 22,268 63 pct.
 FTE adjustment 5,418 4,841
 PER SHARE
 Net income
 Primary $ 1.34 $ 0.98 37 pct.
 Fully-diluted 1.27 0.98 30
 Weighted average
 shares outstanding
 Primary 24,597,484 22,715,003
 Fully-diluted 28,611,324 22,737,409
 Cash dividends $ 0.37 $ 0.34 9 pct.
 PERFORMANCE RATIOS
 Return on average assets 1.14 pct. 0.86 pct.
 Return on average common
 shareholders' equity 16.21 13.42
 Net yield on earning assets
 (fully taxable equivalent) 4.97 4.72
 Three Months Ended
 (Dollars in thousands September 30, Percent
 except per share data) 1992 1991 Change
 RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
 Interest income:
 Interest and fees on
 loans and leases $ 61,970 $ 63,246 (2) pct.
 Interest and dividends
 on securities 23,974 16,605 44
 Interest on temporary
 investments 312 403 (23)
 Total interest income 86,256 80,254 7
 Interest expense:
 Interest on deposits 31,697 37,421 (15)
 Interest on short-term
 borrowings 3,536 3,890 (9)
 Interest on long-term debt 510 598 (15)
 Total interest expense 35,743 41,909 (15)
 Net interest income 50,513 $ 38,345 32
 Provision for loan
 and lease losses 3,691 4,118 (10)
 Noninterest income:
 Service charges on
 deposit accounts 6,125 5,469 12
 Nondeposit fees and
 commissions 3,822 3,444 11
 Securities gains (losses), 0 42 (100)
 Other income 1,032 599 72
 Total noninterest income 10,979 9,554 15
 Noninterest expense:
 Personnel expense 18,406 15,816 16
 Occupancy and
 equipment expense 5,292 4,448 19
 Federal deposit
 insurance expense 1,972 1,618 22
 Foreclosed property expense 1,926 1,565 23
 Other expense 8,693 7,986 9
 Total noninterest expense 36,289 31,433 15
 Provision for income taxes 7,529 4,035 87
 Net income $ 13,983 $ 8,313 68 pct.
 FTE adjustment 1,904 1,774
 PER SHARE
 Net income
 Primary $ 0.50 $ 0.36 39 pct.
 Fully-diluted 0.47 0.36 31
 Weighted average
 shares outstanding
 Primary 25,373,977 22,738,590
 Fully-diluted 29,953,010 22,738,590
 Cash dividends $ 0.13 $ 0.12 8 pct.
 PERFORMANCE RATIOS
 Return on average assets 1.26 pct. 0.95 pct.
 Return on average common
 shareholders' equity 17.65 14.69
 Net yield on earning assets
 (fully taxable equivalent) 5.05 4.96
 As of/For the
 Quarter Ended
 (Dollars in thousands
 except per share data) 9/30/1992 12/31/1991 9/30/1991
 ASSET QUALITY RATIOS
 Nonaccrual loans and leases as
 percent of loans and leases 0.39 pct. 0.71 pct. 1.11 pct.
 Nonperforming assets as
 percent of:
 Total assets 0.79 1.14 1.33
 Loans and leases plus
 foreclosed property 1.27 1.76 2.08
 Net charge-offs as percent of
 average loans and leases 0.37 0.63 0.70
 Allowance for losses as percent
 of loans and leases 1.26 1.27 1.27
 Ratio of allowance for losses to:
 Net charge-offs 3.47 x 2.03 x 1.82 x
 Nonaccrual loans and leases 3.27 1.80 1.14
 AVERAGE BALANCES
 Securities $1,362,282 $ 970,556 $ 829,896
 Loans and leases 2,757,877 2,395,481 2,378,082
 Earning assets 4,149,504 3,418,300 3,236,348
 Total assets 4,436,189 3,695,909 3,503,214
 Deposits 3,626,819 3,205,061 2,942,461
 Short-term borrowings 386,742 196,546 274,321
 Interest-bearing liabilities 3,617,671 3,046,594 2,886,550
 Shareholders' equity 361,700 233,404 226,391
 NOTE: All line items referring to loans and leases
 reflect loans and leases, net of unearned income.
 -0- 10/8/92
 /CONTACT: MEDIA - Bob Denham, 919-671-2427, or ANALYSTS - John R. Spruill, 919-671-2530, both of Southern National/
 (SNB) CO: Southern National Corporation ST: North Carolina IN: FIN SU: ERN


DF -- CH002 -- 7697 10/08/92 07:11 EDT
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Date:Oct 8, 1992
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