Simmons First 1Q Net Income Down 6 Percent

by Lance Turner  on Wednesday, Apr. 19, 2017 3:56 pm  

Simmons First National Corp. of Pine Bluff on Wednesday reported first-quarter net income of $22.1 million, down 6 percent from the same quarter last year.

The company (Nasdaq: SFNC), which announced three acquisitions since November, reported diluted earnings per share of 70 cents, down from 77 cents in the same quarter last year.

Included in the most recent quarter were $412,000 in net after-tax merger-related and branch consolidation costs. Excluding those costs, "core earnings" were $22.5 million, or 71 cents per share, the company said.

"We are excited about our previously announced mergers," George Makris Jr. said in a news release. "As we have indicated, Simmons Bank will enter new and very attractive markets as a result of the Bank SNB and Southwest Bank mergers and will be able to expand in our current markets with the First South Bank merger. We look forward to closing these mergers and integrating these new markets."

The deals, the last of which are set to close in the third quarter, will push the company beyond the key $10 billion-asset mark, a milestone Makris noted in his comments on Wednesday.

"We continue to experience excellent loan growth throughout our market," he said. "While our core expense control remains relatively stable, our non-interest income experienced some usual seasonal declines along with a softer mortgage market during the first quarter. As we prepare for the $10 billion asset threshold, we have managed to offset most of our increases in audit and regulatory affairs expenses with economies gained because of our size and scale."

Total loans were $5.8 billion as of March 31, up 17 percent from the same period in 2016. Legacy loans — all loans excluding acquired loans — grew $1.2 billion, or 33 percent. 

Total deposits were $6.8 billion, up about 12 percent from the same period in 2016.

Quarterly net interest income was $72.4 million, up 3 percent from the same period last year. Net interest margin was 4.04 percent, a 37 basis-point decline from the same quarter last year. 

Non-interest income was $30.1 million, up $557,000 compared with the first quarter of 2016. Simmons attributed the increase to additional trust income, service charge income, debit and credit card income resulting from internal growth and as a result of its most recent acquisition. 



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