Bank of the Ozarks Reaffirms Guidance Amid Financial Turmoil

With the recent selling frenzy hammering most financial stocks nationwide, Bank of the Ozarks Inc. has taken an unusual step to provide information for stockholders in response to all the activity that has sent its stock to a near 52-week low.

In a news release Thursday, the Little Rock banking company said," While it is the company's normal policy to not comment on unusual trading activity or changes in the company's quoted stock price or to provide updated guidance between quarterly conference calls, the company has recently received numerous inquiries requesting updated guidance in light of recent developments in the financial sector."

On May 27, the stock, listed on the Nasdaq market, was selling at $26. On Thursday it closed at $15.79. After the news release yesterday, the stock was climbing In early trading on Wall Street this morning, however, up more than 14 percent or $2.25 to $18.04.

Bank of the Ozarks released its first quarter earnings as well as future guidance on April 10 and since then it said it has not altered that guidance, adding that the guidance provided in its April 11 conference call was still appropriate.

Stockholders are encouraged to listen to the recorded playback of the April 11, 2008 conference call at

In response to specific inquiries from stockholders, the company:

● said one of its goals for 2008 was to achieve record net interest income in each quarter, as it did in the first quarter of 2008, and the Company continues to believe this is a reasonable goal.

● said it continues to expect that its ratios of nonperforming loans and leases, nonperforming assets and past-due loans and leases will increase during 2008 due to current and expected economic conditions, but it continues to believe that its primary markets in Arkansas, Texas and North Carolina have been and will be less significantly impacted by economic weakness than some other markets, and that its ratios for nonperforming loans and leases, nonperforming assets and past due loans and leases will continue to compare favorably to such ratios for the industry as a whole

● said "continues to believe it is on track to achieve its paramount goal for 2008, which is to once again return to a record quarterly earnings pace at some time during the year."

Bank of the Ozarks plans to report second quarter earnings on July 10 and expects to conduct a conference call at 10 a.m. CDT on July 11.