Bank of Ozarks, First Security Ranked Tops in Region by SNL Financial

Two Arkansas banks were ranked as the top performing regional lenders in the nation by SNL Financial LC of Charlottesville, Va.

Little Rock's Bank of the Ozarks Inc. was listed No. 1, and First Security Bancorp of Searcy was listed as No. 2.

(Click here to see a chart of the rankings.)

"This recognition is a result of the high standards of excellence each of our employees aspires to deliver," said George Gleason, chairman and chief executive officer of Bank of the Ozarks.

Also in the list was Home BancShares Inc. of Conway, ranked at No. 16.

The SNL rankings were based on the company's 2011 results in six core financial performance metrics that focus on profitability, asset quality and growth.

The metrics used were: return on average tangible common equity, net charge-offs as a percentage of average loans, adjusted Texas ratio, efficiency ratio, net interest margin and loan growth.

For the purposes of this ranking, SNL defined regional banks as banks below $50 billion in assets with a branch network consisting of greater than 60 offices. Additionally, banks had to be well-capitalized according to regulatory standards. Based on these criteria, 96 companies were included in the ranking.

Warning: Unknown: write failed: No space left on device (28) in Unknown on line 0 Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct (/var/lib/php5) in Unknown on line 0