Simmons First 2Q Earnings Down 3 Percent

Simmons First National Corp. of Pine Bluff on Thursday reported second-quarter net income of $6.5 million, down about 3 percent from $6.7 million during the same quarter last year.

Diluted earnings per share fell to 38 cents for the quarter, down from 39 cents in the same quarter last year.

"We are pleased with our second quarter earnings performance," J. Thomas May, chairman and CEO, said in a news release. "We continue to benefit significantly from strong asset quality, which has resulted in a reduction in our provision for loan losses, and from our on-going efficiency initiatives that resulted in a decrease in our non-interest expense."

Simmons (Nasdaq: SFNC) also reported net income for the six months ended June 30 of $12.9 million, or 75 cents diluted earnings per share, up from $11.8 million, or 68 cents per share.

May also noted that, excluding non-core items from the second quarter of 2011, quarterly earnings per share increased by 2 cents, or 5.6 percent, and year-to-date earnings per share increased by 9 cents, or 13.6 percent.

As of June 30, total deposits were $2.6 billion, up $22 million or 0.9 percent over the same period in 2011. Net interest income for the second quarter was $27.3 million, unchanged from the same period of 2011.

Also as of June 30, non-performing assets as a percent of total assets were 1.13 percent, down from 1.14 percent as of March 31. Non-performing loans as a percent of total loans were 0.79 percent as of June 30, down 6 basis points from 0.85 percent as of March 31.

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