Fresno First Bank posts positive net income despite taxes

Fresno First Bank’s net interest income and non-interest income is up from this time last year.Fresno First Bank’s net interest income and non-interest income is up from this time last year.Taxes played a large factor in Fresno First Bank seeing a decreased first quarter net income of $281,000, compared to $430,000 for the same period in 2011, according to a release from the bank. 

The pre-tax net income was actually higher in 2012 at $477,000 for the first quarter, compared to $310,000 in the first three months of 2011. However the bank paid $196,000 in taxes for the 2011 first quarter, compared to a $120,000 credit the year prior.

“We are very pleased that we have been able to increase our pre-tax income by over 50 percent, compared to last year,” said Rick Whitsell, President and CEO of Fresno First Bank, in the release. “Our net interest income has increased 11.9 percent and our non-interest income is up more than 147 percent, while our operating expenses have only increased 7.8 percent. The only reason the bottom line net income reflects a decline is as a result of the tax credit last year vs. the tax expense in 2012. That really makes the year-to-year comparison difficult and one reason we are keeping our eyes on the more apples-to-apples pre-tax income number.”

The net interest income for the period came in at $1.78 million, as opposed to $1.59 million in the first three months of the year before.

The earnings per share for the first quarter came to 14 cents, down from the 22 cents per share in the first quarter of 2011.

Between Dec. 31, 2011 and March 31, 2012, the banks total assets dropped from $177.7 million to $171.5 million. The total deposits dropped from $158.8 million to $152.0 million.

Bank Executive Vice President and CFO Steve Canfield attributes the decline in deposits to the seasonal cycle of the bank’s large agricultural client base.

“Many of our clients involved in the agricultural segment of our local economy deploy a lot of their capital when gearing up for their crop season,” Canfield said. “This will later reverse when their crops come to market and they sell their products.”

At the end of the quarter, shareholders’ equity was $18.5 million with a capital to total assets ratio of 10.8 percent.