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First National Bank of Paragould to Buy One Bank & Trust

2 min read

After months of would-be suitors checking out Little Rock’s One Bank & Trust, a buyer has emerged.

First National Bank of Paragould reached an agreement to purchase the faltering $274 million-asset lender.

The $1.3 billion-asset First National expects the transaction to close before year’s end.

Details of the deal remain under wraps for now but will be released in the coming weeks, according to a release from First National. The U.S. Treasury Department, which acquired a controlling interest in One Bank’s holding company last May, will be part of the equation.

Total equity capital at One Bank fell to $6.9 million at year’s end, with capital ratios at critical levels: tier one leverage ratio, 2.67 percent; tier one capital ratio, 3.85 percent; and total capital ratio, 5.1 percent. The bank reported 22 consecutive quarters of operational losses as of Dec. 31.

The acquisition would expand First National’s footprint into the heart of central Arkansas.

One Bank operates six full-service offices in Pulaski County, with a staff of 59. The bank recorded a $4.8 million loss during 2017 in a line of losses that date back to 2012.

First National operates 13 full-service offices with a staff of 206 in six counties including Greene, Craighead and Clay in northeast Arkansas, Benton and Washington counties in northwest Arkansas and Cleburne County. The bank recorded a profit of $12.3 million during 2017.

Like First National Bank, One Bank & Trust has a national charter and its primary regulator is the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The acquisition will reduce the number of OCC-regulated institutions in the state to 17. Arvest Bank’s acquisition of Bear State Bank, which closed on Friday, reduced the total number of banks in the state to 95.

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