Bank of the Ozarks, Home BancShares Among Top Performing Banks

The second and third largest banks in Arkansas were recognized as some of the top performers in Bank Director magazine's 2014 Bank Performance Scorecard.

The annual list ranks the 200 largest banks traded on Nasdaq OMX and NYSE, and is divided into three categories based on assets. Big banks are classified as those with more than $50 billion in assets, mid-size banks those between $5 billion and $50 billion, and community banks those with between $1 billion and $5 billion in assets.

The banks are scored on profitability, tangible assets and credit quality, in addition to ratio of nonperforming assets to total loans and other real estate owned, and the ratio of net charge-offs to average loans.

More: For the entire list, click here

Bank of the Ozarks Inc. of Little Rock (Nasdaq: OZRK) was ranked first, for the second year in a row, among community banks.

"The bank grew loans at 24 percent in 2013, and its highest net interest margin, at 5.63 percent, further fueled profitability," Bank Director reported. 

Excluding loans covered by FDIC loss share agreements and purchased loans not covered by loss share, loans and leases were $2.63 billion in 2013, and deposits were up 19.9 percent to $3.72 billion. Total assets were $4.79 billion.

Just last month, the Little Rock-based bank reported second quarter earnings that were up 29.9 percent to $26.5 million. Earlier this month, it announced a $228.5 million deal to buy Intervest Bancshares Corp.

Home BancShares Inc. of Conway (Nasdaq: HOMB), the parent company for Centennial Bank, was ranked No. 18 among mid-size banks.

Profits were up to $66.5 million in 2013 from $63 million in 2012. The bank's biggest move of 2013 was its purchase of Liberty Bancshares Inc. of Jonesboro for $320.1 million. It's the largest in-state bank transaction in Arkansas history.

The bank reported a second quarter profit of $28.4 million in July, up 60 percent from a year ago. It also announced plans to purchase another Florida bank, Broward Bank of Commerce of Fort Lauderdale. It was the bank's second acquisition in Florida this year, in addition to its purchase of Florida Traditions Bank.

As of March 31, Centennial Bank's assets were $6.8 billion.