Little Rock’s Bank of the Ozarks easily beat first quarter expectations Wednesday, posting a record 72 percent increase in profits from a year ago.
For the first three months of the year, the Little Rock bank saw net income of $15.9 million, or 94 cents per share, compared to net income of $9.2 million, or 55 cents, in the same quarter of 2009. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected the Arkansas bank to report earnings of 49 cents per share, on average.
Bank of the Ozarks said the quarterly results include an after-tax gain of $5.9 million to net income, or 35 cents, related to a deal with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) last month to acquire the assets of the former Unity National Bank of Cartersville, Ga.
“We are very pleased with our first quarter results which were at a record level even before our profitable acquisition,” said Bank of the Ozarks Chairman and CEO George Gleason.
Overall, deposits were $2.25 billion for the quarter, down 1.6 percent compared to $2.29 billion last year. Total assets, including those acquired in the Unity transaction, were $3.02 billion versus $3.16 billion a year ago. Common stockholders’ equity was $284 million, up 5.2 percent from $270 million for the first three months of 2009.
Bank of the Ozarks shares closed Wednesday at $36.09, down 55 cents, or 1.5 percent.
Bank of the Ozarks joined regional banking rivals Home Bancshares of Conway and IberiaBank of Lafayette, La., in getting a first quarter boost from deals with the government to grab cheap financial assets that have landed on the FDIC’s notorious "failed bank list."
The Little Rock bank and FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement to takeover all of the deposits of Unity National Bank on March 26.
That deal allowed Bank of the Ozarks to purchase essentially all of Unity’s assets, which were valued at $292.2 million and included $264.3 million in customer deposits at end of 2009. Bank of the Ozarks is further protected by a loss-share agreement with the FDIC that puts the bank’s maximum exposure at $206 million.
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