As pandemic set in, state banks see profits decline

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 422 views 

Arkansas’ 86 FDIC-insured banks and financial institutions together posted net income of $517 million for the three-month period ended June 30, down 36% from $807 million in the same quarter a year ago.

The national decline was sharper throughout the entire industry. The FDIC reported net income of $18.8 billion in the second quarter of 2020, down $43.7 billion (70%) from a year ago. The decline in net income is a continuation of uncertain economic conditions because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which drove an increase in provision expenses.

“Although economic stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic continued to affect bank earnings, the industry has remained a source of strength for the economy,” FDIC Chairman Jalena McWilliams said in a statement. “Banks of all sizes supported their customers and communities, including by originating more than $480 billion in Paycheck Protection Program loans in the second quarter.”

Conway-based Centennial Bank was the Arkansas bank with the most net income in the second quarter at $68.3 million (down from $78.91 million in 2Q 2019) followed by Simmons Bank of Pine Bluff at $65.3 million (up from $63.43 million in 2Q 2019) and Little Rock-based Bank OZK at $50.2 million (down from $110.5 million in 2Q 2019). All three are publicly traded banking groups.

Privately owned lenders round out the top five: First Security Bank of Searcy ($27.9 million) and Fayetteville-chartered Arvest Bank ($26.1 million). First Security was up 7.2% from the year-ago period. Arvest was down 26% from the same quarter of 2019.

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