EX-99.1 2 pressrelease.htm PRESS RELEASE pressrelease.htm


 

 
News Release

For more information contact:
Dennis J. Zember Jr.
Executive Vice President & CFO
(229) 890-1111

AMERIS BANCORP REPORTS RESULTS
FOR THIRD QUARTER OF 2008

October 21, 2008

AMERIS BANCORP (NASDAQ-GS: ABCB), Moultrie, Georgia, reported net income of $366,000, or $0.03 per share, for the quarter ended September 30, 2008, compared to net income for the same quarter in 2007 of $3.6 million, or $0.26 per share.  Net income for the year-to-date period totaled $6.5 million, or $0.48 per share, compared to $14.0 million, or $1.02 per share for the same period in 2007.  Unusually high levels of loan loss provision have been required as several of the Company’s markets have been adversely affected by increasingly negative economic trends.

Provision for Loan Losses and Credit Quality
The Company’s provision for loan losses during the third quarter amounted to $8.2 million, an increase of $5.2 million over the $3.0 million recorded in the third quarter of 2007.  Similarly, provision for loan losses for the year-to-date period increased $10.7 million to $15.1 million for the first nine months of 2008, compared to 2007.

Non-performing assets increased during the current quarter to 2.52% of total loans, compared to 2.09% for the second quarter of 2008 and 1.57% at December 31, 2007.  Net charge-offs on loans during the third quarter of 2008 increased to $6.7 million, compared to $3.2 million in the second quarter of 2008 and $1.6 million in the same quarter of 2007.

The Company’s credit quality has declined as real estate activity and valuations continue to fall.  Construction and development loans account for approximately 61% and 59% of the net charge-offs in the current quarter and year-to-date periods ended September 30, 2008, respectively.  In addition to losses in the construction and development portfolio, residential real estate loans account for approximately14% and 19% of the net charge-offs in the current quarter and year-to-date periods ended September 30, 2008, respectively.  Construction and development loans account for approximately 21.1% and 24.7% of total loans for the period ended September 30, 2008 and September 30, 2007, respectively, while residential real estate loans account for approximately 20.3% and 19.2% of total loans during that same time period.

Trends in Net Interest Income and Net Interest Margin
Total net interest income of $19.2 million for the third quarter of 2008 represented only a slight increase over the $19.1 million recorded in the third quarter of 2007.  Similarly, the year-to-date period reflected small increases in total net interest income, increasing 1.5% to $56.7 million.  Lower levels of growth in net interest income were the result of modest levels of loan growth combined with declining overall margins.

 
-1-

 
The Company’s net interest margin declined in the current quarter to 3.87%, compared to 4.03% in the same quarter in 2007.  For the year-to-date period ended September 30, 2008, the Company reported a decline in the net interest margin to 3.92% from 4.05% in the same period in 2007. Increases in non-performing assets of $21.2 million from September 30, 2007, to September 30, 2008, accounted for 44% of the decline in net interest margin.

Yields on earning assets declined to 6.38% in the current quarter, from 7.87% in the same quarter in 2007.  This decline in overall yields resulted primarily from changes in loan yields, which fell from 8.48% during the third quarter of 2007 to 6.67% during the third quarter of 2008.  Decreases in interest income on loans were partially offset by increases in investment securities, the yields on which increased to 5.06% for the third quarter of 2008, compared to 4.96% in the third quarter of 2007.

Funding costs also offset some of the declines in earning asset yields.  Total funding costs declined to 2.54% in the third quarter of 2008, compared to 3.90% in the same quarter of 2007.  Declines in the yields on time deposits accounted for most of the decline in funding costs, falling to 3.79% in the current quarter, compared to 5.08% in the third quarter of 2007.  The cost of non-deposit borrowing fell significantly to 2.09% in the third quarter of 2008, from 5.78% in the third quarter of 2007.  The majority of the Company’s non-deposit borrowings are LIBOR-based and have benefitted materially from both declining rates and interest rate floors tied to the Company’s borrowings from the FHLB.

Non-Interest Income
Total non-interest income remained virtually unchanged during the third quarter at $4.6 million when compared to the third quarter of 2007.  Increases in service charges on deposit accounts to $3.7 million offset smaller declines in the other non-interest income categories, including mortgage banking activities. Increases in charges and fees have allowed the Company to experience better than average growth in fee income while slower activity in residential real estate in many of the Company’s markets has slowed the growth of mortgage-related revenue.

Non-Interest Expense
Total non-interest expense for the third quarter of 2008 was $14.8 million, a decrease of approximately $408,000 from the same period in 2007.  Salaries and benefits in the current quarter decreased approximately 4.4% to $7.1 million, when compared to the third quarter of 2007.  This decline is primarily attributable to a reduction in incentive pay expense of approximately $1.3 million.  Although the Company’s previously announced workforce reduction was completed during the third quarter, the impact will not begin to be realized until the fourth quarter of 2008 due to its timing during the quarter and the related severance expense.   Occupancy and equipment expense increased during the quarter to $1.9 million, an increase of 8.4% when compared to the same period in 2007.  Additional offices, primarily in South Carolina and Jacksonville, Florida, are the primary reasons for the additional occupancy expenses.

 
Ameris Bancorp is headquartered in Moultrie, Georgia, and at the end of the most recent quarter, had 50 locations in Georgia, Alabama, northern Florida and South Carolina.
 
Ameris Bancorp Common Stock is quoted on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol “ABCB”. The preceding release contains statements that constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. The words “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intend”, “anticipate” and similar expressions and variations thereof identify certain of such forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the dates which they were made. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Readers are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties, and that actual results may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.


 
-2-

 

AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                                           
                                           
   
Three Months Ended
   
Nine Months Ended
 
   
Sept
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept
   
Sept
   
Sept
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
   
2008
   
2007
 
                                           
                                           
EARNINGS
                                         
Net Income
  $ 366     $ 3,149     $ 2,966     $ 1,197     $ 3,570     $ 6,481     $ 13,967  
                                                         
PER COMMON SHARE DATA
                                                       
Earnings per share:
                                                       
Basic
    0.03       0.23       0.22       0.09       0.26       0.48       1.04  
Diluted
    0.03       0.23       0.22       0.09       0.26       0.48       1.02  
Cash Dividends per share
    0.05       0.14       0.14       0.14       0.14       0.33       0.42  
Book value per share (period end)
    14.25       14.20       14.48       14.12       13.93       14.25       13.93  
Tangible book value per share (period end)
    9.92       9.84       10.11       9.72       9.51       9.92       9.51  
Weighted average number of shares:
                                                       
Basic
    13,515,767       13,510,907       13,550,744       13,485,765       13,501,663       13,508,006       13,477,065  
Diluted
    13,543,612       13,563,032       13,559,761       13,573,626       13,620,069       13,555,469       13,650,217  
Period-end number of shares
    13,564,032       13,564,032       13,556,770       13,539,985       13,539,195       13,564,032       13,539,195  
Market data:
                                                       
High closing price
    15.02       16.20       16.41       18.67       23.05       16.20       27.94  
Low closing price
    7.79       8.70       12.49       13.73       17.72       7.79       17.72  
Period end closing price
    14.85       8.70       16.06       16.85       18.08       14.85       18.08  
Average daily volume
    43,464       62,739       61,780       51,604       50,547       55,903       43,565  
                                                         
PERFORMANCE RATIOS
                                                       
Return on average assets
    0.07 %     0.59 %     0.56 %     0.23 %     0.68 %     0.40 %     0.92 %
Return on average equity
    0.78 %     6.58 %     6.15 %     2.49 %     7.56 %     4.53 %     10.10 %
Earning asset yield (TE)
    6.38 %     6.64 %     7.17 %     7.66 %     7.87 %     6.73 %     7.84 %
Total cost of funds
    2.54 %     2.74 %     3.30 %     3.79 %     3.90 %     2.86 %     3.85 %
Net interest margin (TE)
    3.87 %     3.96 %     3.91 %     3.92 %     4.03 %     3.92 %     4.05 %
Non-interest income excluding securities transactions,
                                                 
as a percent of total revenue (TE)
    12.50 %     13.97 %     12.33 %     10.09 %     10.87 %     12.93 %     11.17 %
Efficiency ratio
    61.98 %     65.50 %     67.12 %     67.21 %     64.08 %     64.86 %     62.36 %
                                                         
CAPITAL ADEQUACY
                                                       
Equity to assets
    8.56 %     8.78 %     9.27 %     9.06 %     8.96 %     8.56 %     8.96 %
Tangible common equity to assets
    6.12 %     6.26 %     6.66 %     6.41 %     6.30 %     6.12 %     6.30 %
                                                         
OTHER PERIOD-END DATA
                                                       
FTE Headcount
    601       651       634       620       621       601       621  
Assets per FTE
  $ 3,756     $ 3,369     $ 3,341     $ 3,407     $ 3,390     $ 3,756     $ 3,390  
Branch locations
    50       48       45       46       47       50       47  
Deposits per branch location
  $ 36,127     $ 36,893     $ 39,651     $ 38,201     $ 36,345     $ 36,127     $ 36,345  

 
-3-

 


AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                                           
   
Three Months Ended
   
Nine Months Ended
 
   
Sept
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept
   
Sept
   
Sept
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
   
2008
   
2007
 
                                           
                                           
INCOME STATEMENT
                                         
                                           
Interest income
                                         
Interest and fees on loans
   $ 28,280      $ 28,339      $ 30,134      $ 32,999      $ 33,479     $ 86,752     $ 95,811  
Interest on taxable securities
    3,563       3,646       3,583       3,576       3,480       10,793       10,252  
Interest on nontaxable securities
    169       173       172       158       175       514       530  
Interest on deposits in other banks
    100       91       200       259       317       391       2,017  
Interest on federal funds sold
    0       0       0       (20 )     0       0       92  
Total interest income
    32,112       32,249       34,089       36,972       37,451       98,450       108,702  
                                                         
Interest expense
                                                       
Interest on deposits
    11,717       12,314       14,142       15,620       15,877       38,173       46,621  
Interest on other borrowings
    1,218       879       1,487       2,367       2,493       3,584       6,252  
Total interest expense
    12,935       13,193       15,629       17,987       18,370       41,757       52,873  
                                                         
Net interest income
    19,177       19,056       18,460       18,985       19,081       56,693       55,829  
                                                         
Provision for loan losses
    8,220       3,720       3,200       6,914       2,964       15,140       4,407  
                                                         
Net interest income after provision for loan losses
    10,957       15,336       15,260       12,071       16,117       41,553       51,422  
                                                         
Noninterest income
                                                       
Service charges on deposit accounts
    3,657       3,664       3,316       3,310       3,197       10,637       9,133  
Mortgage banking activity
    745       855       869       827       783       2,469       2,265  
Other service charges, commissions and fees
    120       220       278       942       203       618       1,008  
Gain(loss) on sale of securities
    0       0       0       (236 )     (69 )     0       (61 )
Other non-interest income
    117       574       379       (677 )     477       1,070       1,414  
Total noninterest income
    4,639       5,313       4,842       4,166       4,591       14,794       13,759  
                                                         
Noninterest expense
                                                       
Salaries and employee benefits
    7,113       8,660       8,618       7,122       7,438       24,391       22,662  
Equipment and occupancy expense
    1,904       2,103       1,992       2,118       1,757       5,999       5,151  
Amortization of intangible assets
    293       293       293       324       324       879       973  
Data Processing Fees
    1,238       1,226       1,093       1,096       1,110       3,557       3,436  
Other operating expenses
    4,213       3,680       3,644       4,900       4,540       11,537       11,171  
Total noninterest expense
    14,761       15,962       15,640       15,560       15,169       46,363       43,393  
                                                         
Operating Profit
    835       4,687       4,462       677       5,539       9,984       21,788  
                                                         
Provision for income taxes
    469       1,538       1,496       (520 )     1,969       3,503       7,821  
                                                         
Net Income
  $ 366     $ 3,149     $ 2,966     $ 1,197     $ 3,570     $ 6,481     $ 13,967  
                                                         
Diluted earnings per share
    0.03       0.23       0.22       0.09       0.26       0.48       1.02  

 

 
-4-

 

AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                               
                               
   
Three Months Ended
 
   
Sept.
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept.
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
 
                               
PERIOD-END BALANCE SHEET
                             
                               
Assets
                             
Cash and due from banks
  $ 43,549     $ 47,720     $ 63,401     $ 59,804     $ 58,634  
Federal funds sold and interest bearing balances
    75,458       38,125       4,389       12,022       22,910  
Securities available for sale, at fair value
    287,790       293,601       297,589       291,170       301,978  
Restricted equity securities, at cost
    9,836       9,651       6,996       7,559       8,729  
                                         
Loans, net of unearned income
    1,710,109       1,678,147       1,622,437       1,614,048       1,593,014  
Less allowance for loan losses
    30,144       28,660       28,094       27,640       26,434  
Loans, net
    1,679,965       1,649,487       1,594,343       1,586,408       1,566,580  
                                         
Premises and equipment, net
    65,868       63,291       60,053       59,132       54,639  
Intangible assets, net
    3,924       4,217       4,509       4,802       5,126  
Goodwill
    54,813       54,813       54,675       54,813       54,675  
Other assets
    36,440       32,116       32,288       36,353       31,923  
Total Assets
  $ 2,257,643     $ 2,193,021     $ 2,118,243     $ 2,112,063     $ 2,105,194  
                                         
Liabilities
                                       
Deposits:
                                       
Noninterest-bearing
  $ 198,900     $ 200,936     $ 199,692     $ 197,345     $ 185,803  
Interest-bearing
    1,607,439       1,569,925       1,584,599       1,559,920       1,522,405  
Total deposits
    1,806,339       1,770,861       1,784,291       1,757,265       1,708,208  
Federal funds purchased & securities sold under
                                       
agreements to repurchase
    63,973       39,795       4,987       14,705       32,359  
Other borrowings
    138,600       133,000       74,500       90,500       116,500  
Other liabilities
    13,118       14,541       15,888       16,075       17,262  
Subordinated deferrable interest debentures
    42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269  
Total liabilities
    2,064,299       2,000,466       1,921,935       1,920,814       1,916,598  
                                         
                                         
Stockholders' equity
                                       
  Common stock
    14,895       14,895       14,887       14,870       14,869  
  Capital surplus
    83,453       83,308       82,920       82,750       82,308  
  Retained earnings
    105,117       105,430       104,182       103,095       103,803  
  Accumulated other comprehensive loss
    666       (291 )     5,093       1,303       (1,616 )
  Less treasury stock
    (10,787 )     (10,787 )     (10,774 )     (10,769 )     (10,768 )
Total stockholders' equity
    193,344       192,555       196,308       191,249       188,596  
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity
  $ 2,257,643     $ 2,193,021     $ 2,118,243     $ 2,112,063     $ 2,105,194  
                                         
                                         
Other Data
                                       
Earning Assets
    2,073,357       2,009,873       1,924,415       1,917,240       1,917,902  
Intangible Assets
    58,737       59,030       59,184       59,615       59,801  
Interest Bearing Liabilities
    1,852,281       1,784,989       1,706,355       1,707,394       1,713,533  
Average Assets
    2,192,501       2,141,940       2,115,561       2,102,579       2,069,715  
Average Stockholders' Equity
    186,541       192,605       193,971       191,124       187,290  

 
-5-

 


AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                                           
                                           
   
Three Months Ended
   
Nine Months Ended
 
   
Sept
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept
   
Sept
   
Sept
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
   
2008
   
2007
 
                                           
ASSET QUALITY INFORMATION
                                         
                                           
Allowance for loan losses
                                         
Balance at beginning of period
  $ 28,660     $ 28,094     $ 27,640     $ 26,434     $ 25,032     $ 27,640     $ 24,863  
Provision for loan loss
    8,220       3,720       3,200       6,914       2,964       15,140       4,407  
                                                         
Charge-offs
    6,946       3,800       2,945       6,465       1,807       13,691       3,921  
Recoveries
    210       646       199       757       245       1,055       1,086  
Net charge-offs (recoveries)
    6,736       3,154       2,746       5,708       1,562       12,636       2,835  
                                                         
Ending balance
  $ 30,144     $ 28,660     $ 28,094     $ 27,640     $ 26,434     $ 30,144     $ 26,435  
                                                         
As a percentage of loans
    1.76 %     1.71 %     1.73 %     1.71 %     1.66 %     1.76 %     1.66 %
As a percentage of nonperforming loans
    76.46 %     89.27 %     104.78 %     149.66 %     135.81 %     76.46 %     135.82 %
As a percentage of nonperforming assets
    69.84 %     81.56 %     86.34 %     108.56 %     120.37 %     69.84 %     120.37 %
                                                         
                                                         
Net charge-off information
                                                       
Charge-offs
                                                       
Commercial, Financial & Agricultural
  $ 963     $ 282     $ 390     $ 421     $ 353     $ 1,635     $ 757  
Real Estate - Residential
    989       902       672       1,262       433       2,563       1,007  
Real Estate - Commercial & Farmland
    628       49       299       621       119       976       622  
Real Estate - Construction & Development
    4,165       2,319       1,305       3,899       709       7,789       1,114  
Consumer Installment
    201       248       279       262       193       728       421  
Other
    0       0       0       0       0       0       0  
Total charge-offs
    6,946       3,800       2,945       6,465       1,807       13,691       3,921  
                                                         
Recoveries
                                                       
Commercial, Financial & Agricultural
  $ 83     $ 102     $ 18     $ 95     $ 41     $ 203     $ 494  
Real Estate - Residential
    54       90       25       14       48       169       116  
Real Estate - Commercial & Farmland
    (3 )     68       31       159       79       96       181  
Real Estate - Construction & Development
    26       322       34       401       13       382       14  
Consumer Installment
    50       64       90       88       64       204       281  
Other
    0       0       1       0       0       1       0  
Total recoveries
    210       646       199       757       245       1,055       1,086  
                                                         
Net charge-offs (recoveries)
  $ 6,736     $ 3,154     $ 2,746     $ 5,708     $ 1,562     $ 12,636     $ 2,835  
                                                         
                                                         
                                                         
Non-accrual loans
    39,427       32,106       26,812       18,468       19,464       39,427       19,464  
Foreclosed assets
    3,734       3,032       5,727       6,993       2,497       3,734       2,497  
Total non-performing assets
    43,161       35,138       32,539       25,461       21,961       43,161       21,961  
Non-performing assets as a percent of loans
                                                       
and foreclosed assets
    2.52 %     2.09 %     2.00 %     1.57 %     1.38 %     2.52 %     1.38 %
Net charge offs as a percent of loans (Annualized)
    1.58 %     0.75 %     0.68 %     1.41 %     0.39 %     0.99 %     0.24 %

 
-6-

 



AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                                           
                                           
   
Three Months Ended
   
Nine Months Ended
 
   
Sept
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept
   
Sept
   
Sept
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
   
2008
   
2007
 
                                           
                                           
AVERAGE BALANCES
                                         
                                           
Short term assets
  $ 21,219     $ 18,236     $ 23,480     $ 21,826     $ 26,212     $ 20,978     $ 53,570  
Investment securities
    299,564       307,304       291,708       297,380       299,925       299,525       298,251  
Loans
    1,698,024       1,650,781       1,617,991       1,605,006       1,569,906       1,655,599       1,513,321  
  Total Earning Assets
    2,018,807       1,976,321       1,933,179       1,924,212       1,896,043       1,976,102       1,865,142  
                                                         
Noninterest bearing deposits
    200,357       197,662       191,860       187,908       190,315       196,626       194,131  
Interest bearing deposits
    607,534       607,777       612,212       596,053       575,415       609,174       567,448  
Savings
    55,143       54,973       54,221       55,305       58,778       54,779       61,148  
CDs
    929,787       903,655       890,668       886,117       870,731       908,037       870,774  
  Deposits
    1,792,821       1,764,067       1,748,961       1,725,383       1,695,239       1,768,616       1,693,501  
                                                         
FHLB advances
    130,849       111,922       97,162       105,570       110,056       113,311       88,237  
Subordinated debentures
    42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269       42,269  
Other borrowings
    30,713       13,815       17,490       22,298       18,878       20,673       14,467  
  Total non-deposit funding
    203,831       168,006       156,921       170,137       171,203       176,253       144,973  
                                                         
  Total funding
  $ 1,996,652     $ 1,932,073     $ 1,905,882     $ 1,895,520     $ 1,866,442     $ 1,944,869     $ 1,838,474  

 
-7-

 



AMERIS BANCORP
 
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
 
(unaudited)
 
(dollars in thousands except per share data and FTE headcount)
 
                                           
   
Three Months Ended
   
Nine Months Ended
 
   
Sept
   
June
   
Mar.
   
Dec.
   
Sept
   
Sept
   
Sept
 
   
2008
   
2008
   
2008
   
2007
   
2007
   
2008
   
2007
 
                                           
INTEREST INCOME/EXPENSE
                                         
                                           
Short term assets
  $ 100     $ 91     $ 193     $ 239     $ 317     $ 384     $ 2,111  
Investment securities (TE)
    3,823       3,912       3,842       3,818       3,750       11,577       11,067  
Loans (TE)
    28,559       28,704       30,409       33,078       33,560       87,672       96,239  
  Total Earning Assets
    32,482       32,707       34,444       37,135       37,627       99,633       109,417  
                                                         
Noninterest bearing deposits
    -       -       -       -       -       -       -