10-K 1 a09-36176_110k.htm 10-K

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 10-K

 

(Mark One)

 

x

Annual Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

 

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2009

 

or

 

o

Transition Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

 

For the transition period from            to            

 

Commission file number 000-52592

 

Congaree Bancshares, Inc.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

South Carolina

 

20-1734180

(State of Incorporation)

 

(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)

 

1201 Knox Abbott Drive, Cayce, SC

 

29033

(Address of principal executive offices)

 

(Zip Code)

 

(803) 794-2265

(Issuer’s Telephone Number)

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Exchange Act: None

 

Securities registered under Section 12(g) of the Exchange Act:

 

Title of each class:  Common Stock, $0.01 par value per share

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes o No x

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Exchange Act. Yes o No x

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.  Yes x No o

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§ 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).  Yes o No o

 

Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. o

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). Yes o No x

 

The aggregate market value of the voting and nonvoting common equity held by non-affiliates of the registrant (computed by reference to the price at which the stock was most recently sold) was $6,175,536 as of the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter.

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company.  See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.  (Check one):

 

Large accelerated filer o

 

Accelerated filer o

 

 

 

Non-accelerated filer o

 

Smaller reporting company x

(Do not check if a smaller reporting company)

 

 

 

Indicate the number of shares outstanding of each of the registrant’s classes of common stock, as of the latest practicable date.

 

Class

 

Outstanding at March 25, 2010

Common Stock, $.01 par value per share

 

1,764,439 shares

 

DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

 

Proxy Statement for the Annual Meeting of Shareholders to be held on June 16, 2010 Part III (Items 10-14)

 

 

 



 

Part I

 

Item 1.  Business

 

This Report contains statements which constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  Forward-looking statements may relate to our financial condition, results of operation, plans, objectives, or future performance.  These statements are based on many assumptions and estimates and are not guarantees of future performance.  Our actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in any forward-looking statements, as they will depend on many factors about which we are unsure, including many factors which are beyond our control.  The words “may,” “would,” “could,” “will,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “intend,” “plan,” and “estimate,” as well as similar expressions, are meant to identify such forward-looking statements.  Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those described below under “Risk Factors” and the following:

 

·                  reduced earnings due to higher credit losses generally and specifically because losses in the sectors of our loan portfolio secured by real estate are greater than expected due to economic factors, including declining real estate values, increasing interest rates, increasing unemployment, or changes in payment behavior or other factors;

·                  reduced earnings due to higher credit losses because our loans are concentrated by loan type, industry segment, borrower type, or location of the borrower or collateral;

·                  restrictions or conditions imposed by our regulators on our operations may make it more difficult for us to achieve our goals;

·                  our efforts to raise capital or otherwise increase our regulatory capital ratios;

·                  our ability to retain our existing customers, including our deposit relationships;

·                  significant increases in competitive pressure in the banking and financial services industries;

·                  changes in the interest rate environment, which could reduce anticipated or actual margins;

·                  changes in political conditions or the legislative or regulatory environment;

·                  general economic conditions, either nationally or regionally and especially in our primary service area, becoming less favorable than expected, resulting in, among other things, a deterioration in credit quality;

·                  changes occurring in business conditions and inflation;

·                  changes in technology;

·                  changes in monetary and tax policies;

·                  the level of allowance for loan loss;

·                  the rate of delinquencies and amounts of charge-offs;

·                  the rates of loan growth;

·                  the amount of our loan portfolio collateralized by real estate, and the weakness in the real estate market;

·                  our reliance on available secondary funding sources such as FHLB advances, Federal Reserve Discount Window borrowings, sales of securities and loans, and federal funds lines of credit from correspondent banks to meet our liquidity needs;

·                  our ability to maintain effective internal control over financial reporting;

·                  adverse changes in asset quality and resulting credit risk-related losses and expenses;

·                  loss of consumer confidence and economic disruptions resulting from terrorist activities or other military activity;

·                  changes in the securities markets; and

·                  other risks and uncertainties detailed from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”).

 

These risks are exacerbated by the recent developments in national and international financial markets, and we are unable to predict what impact these uncertain market conditions will have on us.  During 2008 and 2009, the capital and credit markets experienced extended volatility and disruption.  There can be no assurance that these unprecedented recent developments will not continue to materially and adversely impact our business, financial condition, and results of operations, as well as our ability to raise capital or other funding for liquidity and business purposes.

 

We have based our forward-looking statements on our current expectations about future events.  Although we believe that the expectations reflected in our forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee that

 

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these expectations will be achieved.  We undertake no obligation to publicly update or otherwise revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

 

General

 

Congaree Bancshares, Inc. (the “Company”) is a South Carolina corporation organized in November 2005 to operate as a bank holding company pursuant to the Federal Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 and the South Carolina Bank Holding Company Act, and to own and control all of the capital stock of Congaree State Bank (the “Bank”).  The Bank opened for business on October 16, 2006.  The Bank currently maintains a main office at 1201 Knox Abbott Drive, Cayce, South Carolina.  We opened a second office located at 2023 Sunset Boulevard, West Columbia, South Carolina in 2008.

 

Our assets consist primarily of our investment in the Bank and liquid investments. Our primary activities are conducted through the Bank.  As of December 31, 2009, our consolidated total assets were $140,036,471, our consolidated total loans were $106,143,726, our consolidated total deposits were $124,596,710, and our total shareholders’ equity was approximately $12,196,323.

 

Our net income is dependent primarily on our net interest income, which is the difference between the interest income earned on loans, investments, and other interest-earning assets and the interest paid on deposits and other interest-bearing liabilities.  To a lesser extent, our net income also is affected by our noninterest income derived principally from service charges and fees and income from the sale and/or servicing of financial assets such as loans and investments, as well as the level of noninterest expenses such as salaries, employee benefits and occupancy costs.

 

Our operations are significantly affected by prevailing economic conditions, competition, and the monetary, fiscal, and regulatory policies of governmental agencies.  Lending activities are influenced by a number of factors, including the general credit needs of individuals and small and medium-sized businesses in our market areas, competition among lenders, the level of interest rates, and the availability of funds.  Deposit flows and costs of funds are influenced by prevailing market rates of interest, primarily the rates paid on competing investments, account maturities, and the levels of personal income and savings in our market areas.

 

Marketing Focus

 

Congaree State Bank is a locally-owned and operated bank organized to serve consumers and small- to mid-size businesses and professional concerns.  A primary reason for operating the Bank lies in our belief that a community-based bank, with a personal focus, can better identify and serve local relationship banking needs than can a branch or subsidiary of larger outside banking organizations.  We believe that we can be successful by offering a higher level of customer service and a management team more focused on the needs of the community than most of our competitors.  We believe that this approach will be enthusiastically supported by the community.

 

Banking Services

 

The Bank is primarily engaged in the business of accepting demand and time deposits and providing commercial, consumer and mortgage loans to the general public.  Deposits in the Bank are insured by the FDIC up to a maximum amount, which is currently $250,000 though December 31, 2013.  Other services which the Bank offers include online banking, commercial cash management, remote deposit capture, safe deposit boxes, bank official checks, traveler’s checks, and wire transfer capabilities.

 

Location and Service Area

 

Our primary service area consists of Lexington and Richland Counties, with a primary focus on an area within a 15 mile radius of our main office in West Columbia, South Carolina.  Our Sunset office is located in West Columbia on a major artery that connects Columbia with Lexington.  We opened the Sunset office in January, 2008.  The site is located approximately one mile east of the Lexington Medical Center and provides excellent visibility for the Bank.

 

Our primary service area consists of Lexington and Richland Counties, South Carolina.  With its central location in the state and convenient access to I-20, I-26, and I-77, this area is considered one of the fastest growing areas in South Carolina.  Home to the state capital, the University of South Carolina, and a variety of service-based and light manufacturing companies, this area provides a growing and diverse economy.  Lexington Medical Center, Lexington County’s largest employer, has approximately 3,800 employees and continues to expand.  The other top

 

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employers in Lexington County include Michelin Tire Corporation, Allied-Signal Corporation, United Parcel Service, and NCR Corporation.  The amenities and opportunities that our primary service area offers are wide-ranging from housing, education, healthcare, shopping, recreation, and culture.  We believe these factors make the quality of life in the area attractive.

 

Our primary service area has also experienced solid population growth.  From 1990 to 2000 Lexington County’s population increased by 28.9% (an increase of 48,403 people), for a ranking of 5th among the 46 counties in terms of population growth over the last decade.  Based on a 2008 estimate, Lexington County is home to almost 249,000 people, making up roughly 5.5% of the total state population.  Lexington has shown to be a magnet for new residents as shown through its growth rate of 15% since April of 2000.  Lexington County has 15 municipalities within its borders.  Based on U.S. Census data, West Columbia is one of the largest cities in Lexington County with approximately 13,914 residents in 2008, representing a growth rate of approximately 6.5% from 2000 to 2008.  Together Lexington and Richland Counties had a population of 612,519, as of 2008.  As of June 30, 2009, the Bank maintained a 3.94% deposit market share in Lexington County.

 

Despite being in what we believe is one of the best markets in South Carolina, we face the risk of being particularly sensitive to changes in the state and local economies.  South Carolina has not been immune to the economic challenges of the past two years.  Unemployment has been rising in our markets and property values have declined.  Continued higher levels of unemployment will continue to impact credit quality.  As a result, we are spending significant time on credit solutions for our customers and managing and disposing of real estate acquired in settlement of loans as effectively as possible.  The weakening in the state and local economies has impacted our loan demand and, to a lesser extent, available deposits.

 

See Item 1A. Risk Factors for a discussion regarding the material risks and uncertainties that may impact our market.

 

Lending Activities

 

We emphasize a range of lending services, including real estate, commercial, and equity-line and consumer loans to individuals, small- to medium-sized businesses, and professional concerns that are located in or conduct a substantial portion of their business in our Bank’s primary service area.  We compete for these loans with competitors who are well established in our service area and have greater resources and lending limits.  As a result, we may have to charge lower interest rates to attract borrowers.

 

The well established banks in our service area will likely make proportionately more loans to medium- to large-sized businesses than we will.  Many of the Bank’s anticipated commercial loans will likely be made to small- to medium-sized businesses which may be less able to withstand competitive, economic, and financial conditions than larger borrowers.

 

Loan Approval and Review.  Certain credit risks are inherent in making loans.  These include prepayment risks, risks resulting from uncertainties in the future value of collateral, risks resulting from changes in economic and industry conditions, and risks inherent in dealing with individual borrowers.  We attempt to mitigate repayment risks by adhering to internal credit policies and procedures.  The Bank’s loan approval policies provide for various levels of officer lending authority.  When the amount of aggregate loans to a single borrower exceeds any individual officer’s lending authority, the loan request is considered and approved by an officer with a higher lending limit or the board of directors’ loan committee.  The Bank’s lending staff and credit administration meets on a bi-monthly basis to help identify and discuss potential problem loans.  The Bank does not make any loans to any director of the Bank unless the loan is approved by the board of directors of the Bank and is made on terms not more favorable to the person than would be available to a person not affiliated with the Bank.  The Bank currently adheres to Federal National Mortgage Association and Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation guidelines in its mortgage loan review process, but may choose to alter this policy in the future.  The Bank sells residential mortgage loans that it originates in the secondary market.

 

Allowance for Loan Losses.  We maintain an allowance for loan losses, which we establish through a provision for loan losses charged against income.  We charge loans against this allowance when we believe that the collectibility of the principal is unlikely.  The allowance is an estimated amount that we believe is adequate to absorb losses inherent in the loan portfolio based on evaluations of its collectibility.  As of December 31, 2009, our allowance for loan losses was approximately 1.38% of the average outstanding balance of our loans, based on our consideration of several factors, including regulatory guidelines, mix of our loan portfolio, and evaluations of local

 

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economic conditions as well as peer data.  Over time, we will periodically determine the amount of the allowance based on our consideration of several factors, including:

 

·                  an ongoing review of the quality, mix, and size of our overall loan portfolio;

·                  our historical loan loss experience;

·                  evaluation of economic conditions;

·                  specific problem loans and commitments that may affect the borrower’s ability to pay;

·                  regular reviews of loan delinquencies and loan portfolio quality by our internal auditors and our bank regulators; and

·                  the amount and quality of collateral, including guarantees, securing the loans.

 

Lending Limits.  The Bank’s lending activities are subject to a variety of lending limits imposed by federal law.  In general, the Bank is subject to a legal limit on loans to a single borrower equal to 15% of the Bank’s capital and unimpaired surplus.  Different limits may apply based on the type of loan or the nature of the borrower, including the borrower’s relationship to the Bank.  These limits will increase or decrease as the Bank’s capital increases or decreases.  Unless the Bank is able to sell participations in its loans to other financial institutions, the Bank will not be able to meet all of the lending needs of loan customers requiring aggregate extensions of credit above these limits.

 

Credit Risk.  The principal credit risk associated with each category of loans is the creditworthiness of the borrower.  Borrower creditworthiness is affected by general economic conditions and the strength of the manufacturing, services, and retail market segments.  General economic factors affecting a borrower’s ability to repay include interest, inflation, and employment rates and the strength of local and national economy, as well as other factors affecting a borrower’s customers, suppliers, and employees.

 

Real Estate Loans.  One of the primary components of our loan portfolio is loans secured by first or second mortgages on real estate.  As of December 31, 2009, loans secured by first or second mortgages on real estate made up approximately $92,180,742, or 86.8% of our loan portfolio.  These loans will generally fall into one of two categories: real estate — mortgage and real estate — construction.  These categories are discussed in more detail below, including their specific risks.  Interest rates for all categories may be fixed or adjustable, and will more likely be fixed for shorter-term loans.  The Bank will generally charge an origination fee for each loan.

 

Real estate loans are subject to the same general risks as other loans.  Real estate loans are also sensitive to fluctuations in the value of the real estate securing the loan.  On first and second mortgage loans we typically do not advance more than regulatory limits.  We will require a valid mortgage lien on all real property loans along with a title lien policy which insures the validity and priority of the lien.  We will also require borrowers to obtain hazard insurance policies and flood insurance, if applicable.  Additionally, certain types of real estate loans have specific risk characteristics that vary according to the collateral type securing the loan and the terms and repayment sources for the loan.

 

We will have the ability to originate some real estate loans for sale into the secondary market.  We can limit our interest rate and credit risk on these loans by locking the interest rate for each loan with the secondary investor and receiving the investor’s underwriting approval prior to originating the loan.

 

·                  Real Estate - Mortgage.  Loans secured by real estate mortgages are the principal component of our loan portfolio.  These loans generally fall into one of two categories: residential real estate loans and commercial real estate loans.

 

·                  Residential Real Estate Loans.  At December 31, 2009, our individual residential real estate loans ranged in size from $3,400 to $709,200, with an average loan size of approximately $85,400.  These loans generally have longer terms of up to 30 years.  We offer fixed and adjustable rate mortgages, and we intend to sell most, if not all, of the residential real estate loans that we generate in the secondary market soon after we originate them.  We do not intend to retain servicing rights for these loans.  Inherent in residential real estate loans’ credit risk is the risk that the primary source of repayment, the residential borrower, will be insufficient to service the debt.  If a real estate loan is in default, we also run the risk that the value of a residential real estate loan’s secured real estate will decrease, and thereby be insufficient to satisfy the loan.  To mitigate these risks, we will evaluate each borrower on an individual basis and attempt to determine its credit profile.  By selling these loans in the secondary market, we can significantly reduce our

 

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exposure to credit risk because the loans will be underwritten through a third party agent without any recourse against the Bank.  At December 31, 2009, residential real estate loans (other than construction loans) totaled $43,800,218, or 41.3% of our loan portfolio.

 

·                  Commercial Real Estate Loans.  At December 31, 2009, our individual commercial real estate loans ranged in size from $9,700 to $1,456,800, with an average loan size of approximately $253,400.  Commercial real estate loans generally have terms of five years or less, although payments may be structured on a longer amortization basis.  Inherent in commercial real estate loans’ credit risk is the risk that the primary source of repayment, the operating commercial real estate company, will be insufficient to service the debt.  If a real estate loan is in default, we also run the risk that the value of a commercial real estate loan’s secured real estate will decrease, and thereby be insufficient to satisfy the loan.  To mitigate these risks, we evaluate each borrower on an individual basis and attempt to determine its business risks and credit profile.  We attempt to reduce credit risk in the commercial real estate portfolio by emphasizing loans on owner-occupied office and retail buildings where the loan-to-value ratio is established by independent appraisals.  We typically review the personal financial statements of the principal owners and require their personal guarantees.  These reviews often reveal secondary sources of payment and liquidity to support a loan request.  At December 31, 2009, commercial real estate loans (other than construction loans) totaled $31,926,392, or 30.1% of our loan portfolio.

 

·                  Real Estate - Construction.  We offer adjustable and fixed rate residential and commercial construction loans to builders and developers and to consumers who wish to build their own home.  The term of construction and development loans will generally be limited to 18 months, although payments may be structured on a longer amortization basis.  Most loans will mature and require payment in full upon the sale of the property.  Construction and development loans generally carry a higher degree of risk than long term financing of existing properties.  Repayment usually depends on the ultimate completion of the project within cost estimates and on the sale of the property.  Specific risks include:

 

·                  cost overruns;

·                  mismanaged construction;

·                  inferior or improper construction techniques;

·                  economic changes or downturns during construction;

·                  a downturn in the real estate market;

·                  rising interest rates which may prevent sale of the property; and

·                  failure to sell completed projects in a timely manner.

 

We attempt to reduce risk by obtaining personal guarantees where possible, and by keeping the loan-to-value ratio of the completed project below specified percentages.  We may also reduce risk by selling participations in larger loans to other institutions when possible.  At December 31, 2009, total construction loans amounted to $16,454,132, or 15.5% of our loan portfolio.

 

Commercial Loans.  The Bank makes loans for commercial purposes in various lines of businesses.  We focus our efforts on commercial loans of less than $1,000,000.  Equipment loans will typically be made for a term of five years or less at fixed or variable rates, with the loan fully amortized over the term and secured by the financed equipment.  Working capital loans typically have terms not exceeding one year and are usually secured by accounts receivable, inventory, or personal guarantees of the principals of the business.  For loans secured by accounts receivable or inventory, principal is typically repaid as the assets securing the loan are converted into cash, and in other cases principal is typically due at maturity.  Trade letters of credit, standby letters of credit, and foreign exchange are handled through a correspondent bank as agent for the Bank.  Commercial loans primarily have risk that the primary source of repayment, the borrowing business, will be insufficient to service the debt.  Often this occurs as the result of changes in local economic conditions or in the industry in which the borrower operates which impact cash flow or collateral value.

 

We also offer small business loans utilizing government enhancements such as the Small Business Administration’s 7(a) and SBA’s 504 programs.  These loans are typically partially guaranteed by the government which may help to reduce the Bank’s risk.  Government guarantees of SBA loans will not exceed 80% of the loan value, and will generally be less.  At December 31, 2009, commercial loans amounted to $11,738,295, or 11.1% of our loan portfolio.

 

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Equity and Consumer Loans.  The Bank makes a variety of loans to individuals for personal and household purposes, including secured and unsecured installment loans and revolving lines of credit such as credit cards.  Installment loans typically carry balances of less than $50,000 and are amortized over periods up to 60 or more months.  Consumer loans may be offered on a single maturity basis where a specific source of repayment is available.  Revolving loan products typically require monthly payments of interest and a portion of the principal.

 

Consumer loans are generally considered to have greater risk than first or second mortgages on real estate because the value of the secured property may depreciate rapidly, they are often dependent on the borrower’s employment status as the sole source of repayment, and some of them are unsecured.  To mitigate these risks, we analyze selective underwriting criteria for each prospective borrower, which may include the borrower’s employment history, income history, credit bureau reports, or debt to income ratios.  If the consumer loan is secured by property, such as an automobile loan, we also attempt to offset the risk of rapid depreciation of the collateral with a shorter loan amortization period.  Despite these efforts to mitigate our risks, consumer loans have a higher rate of default than real estate loans.  For this reason, we also attempt to reduce our loss exposure to these types of loans by limiting their sizes relative to other types of loans.

 

We also offer home equity loans.  Our underwriting criteria for and the risks associated with home equity loans and lines of credit will generally be the same as those for first mortgage loans.  Home equity lines of credit typically have terms of 15 years or less, typically carry balances less than $125,000, and may extend up to 90% of the available equity of each property. At December 31, 2009, individual home equity lines of credit, which are secured by real estate, amounted to $27,425,120, or 25.8% of our loan portfolio.  Consumer loans which are not secured by real estate amounted to $2,224,689 or 2.1% of our loan portfolio.

 

Relative Risks of Loans.  Each category of loan has a different level of credit risk.  Real estate loans are generally safer than loans secured by other assets because the value of the underlying security, real estate, is generally ascertainable and does not fluctuate as much as some other assets.  Certain real estate loans are less risky than others.  Residential real estate loans are generally the least risky type of real estate loan, followed by commercial real estate loans and construction and development loans.  Commercial loans, which can be secured by real estate or other assets, or which can be unsecured, are generally more risky than real estate loans, but less risky than consumer loans.  Finally, consumer loans, which can also be secured by real estate or other assets, or which can also be unsecured, are generally considered to be the most risky of these categories of loans.  Any type of loan which is unsecured is generally more risky than secured loans.  These levels of risk are general in nature, and many factors including the creditworthiness of the borrower or the particular nature of the secured asset may cause any type of loan to be more or less risky than another.  Additionally, these levels of risk are limited to an analysis of credit risk, and they do not take into account other risk factors associated with making loans such as the interest rate risk inherent in long-term, fixed-rate loans.

 

Deposit Services

 

We offer a full range of deposit services that are typically available in most banks and savings and loan associations, including checking accounts, NOW accounts, commercial accounts, savings accounts, and other time deposits of various types, ranging from daily money market accounts to longer-term certificates of deposit.  The transaction accounts and time certificates are typically tailored to our primary service area at competitive rates.  In addition, we offer certain retirement account services, including IRAs.  We solicit these accounts from individuals, businesses, and other organizations.

 

Other Banking Services

 

We offer safe deposit boxes, cashier’s checks, banking by mail, direct deposit of payroll and social security checks, U.S. Savings Bonds, and traveler’s checks.  The Bank is associated with the Intercept Switch, Pulse, MasterCard, Cirrus and Plus ATM networks that may be used by the Bank’s customers throughout the country.  We believe that by being associated with a shared network of ATMs, we are better able to serve our customers and will be able to attract customers who are accustomed to the convenience of using ATMs.  We also offer a debit card and credit card services through a correspondent bank as an agent for the Bank.  We anticipate that the Bank eventually may offer other bank services including, lines of credit, 24-hour telephone banking, and online banking.  We do not expect the Bank to exercise trust powers during its initial years of operation.

 

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Competition

 

The Columbia/West Columbia/Lexington market is highly competitive, with all of the largest banks in the state, as well as super regional banks, represented.  The competition among the various financial institutions is based upon a variety of factors, including interest rates offered on deposit accounts, interest rates charged on loans, credit and service charges, the quality of services rendered, the convenience of banking facilities and, in the case of loans to large commercial borrowers, relative lending limits.  In addition to banks and savings associations, we compete with other financial institutions including securities firms, insurance companies, credit unions, leasing companies and finance companies.  Size gives larger banks certain advantages in competing for business from large corporations.  These advantages include higher lending limits and the ability to offer services in other areas of South Carolina.  As a result, we do not generally attempt to compete for the banking relationships of large corporations, but concentrate our efforts on small- to medium-sized businesses and individuals.  We believe we will compete effectively in this market by offering quality and personal service.

 

Employees

 

As of December 31, 2009, we had 27 full-time employees and 4 part-time employees.

 

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SUPERVISION AND REGULATION

 

Both Congaree Bancshares, Inc. and Congaree State Bank are subject to extensive state and federal banking regulations that impose restrictions on and provide for general regulatory oversight of their operations.  These laws generally are intended to protect depositors and not shareholders.  The following summary is qualified by reference to the statutory and regulatory provisions discussed.  Changes in applicable laws or regulations may have a material effect on our business and prospects.  Our operations may be affected by legislative changes and the policies of various regulatory authorities.  We cannot predict the effect that fiscal or monetary policies, economic control, or new federal or state legislation may have on our business and earnings in the future.

 

The following discussion is not intended to be a complete list of all the activities regulated by the banking laws or of the impact of such laws and regulations on our operations.  It is intended only to briefly summarize some material provisions.

 

Recent Legislative and Regulatory Initiatives to Address Financial and Economic Crisis

 

Emergency Economic Stabilization Act

 

In response to the financial crisis affecting the banking system and financial markets, the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (“EESA”) was signed into law on October 3, 2008, which among other things: (1) temporarily increased FDIC insurance coverage from $100,000 to $250,000 through December 31, 2009 (subsequently extended through December 31, 2013); and (2) established the Troubled Asset Relief Program (“TARP”).  As part of TARP, the United States Department of the Treasury (“Treasury”) established the Capital Purchase Program (“CPP”) to provide up to $700 billion of funding to eligible financial institutions through the purchase of capital stock and other financial instruments for the purpose of stabilizing and providing liquidity to the U.S. financial markets.  In connection with EESA, there have been numerous actions by the FRB, Congress, and the Treasury, the FDIC, the SEC and others to further the economic and banking industry stabilization efforts under EESA.  It remains unclear at this time what further legislative and regulatory measures will be implemented under EESA affecting the Company.

 

On January 9, 2009, as part of the TARP CPP, we entered into a Letter Agreement and Securities Purchase Agreement (collectively, the “CPP Purchase Agreement”) with the Treasury Department, pursuant to which we sold (i) 3,285 shares of our Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series A (the “Series S Preferred Stock”) and (ii) a warrant (the “CPP Warrant”) to purchase 164 shares of our Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series A (the “Series B Preferred Stock”) for an aggregate purchase price of $3,285,000 million in cash.  The CPP Warrant was immediately exercised.

 

The Series A Preferred Stock qualified as Tier 1 capital and is entitled to cumulative dividends at a rate of 5% per annum for the first five years, and 9% per annum thereafter.  The Series B Preferred Stock qualified as Tier 1 capital and is entitled to cumulative dividends at a rate of 9% per annum.  We must consult with the Commission before we may redeem the Series A and Series B Preferred Stock but, contrary to the original restrictions in the EESA, will not necessarily be required to raise additional equity capital in order to redeem this stock.

 

Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program

 

On October 14, 2008, the FDIC announced the establishment of the Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program (“TLGP”) to provide: (1) full deposit insurance on all non-interest bearing transaction account balances through December 31, 2009 (Transaction Account Guarantee Program); and (2) guarantees of certain newly issued senior unsecured debt issued by financial institutions and bank holding companies through June 30, 2012 (Debt Guarantee Program).  The Bank elected to participate in the Transaction Account Guarantee Program, but not the Debt Guarantee Program.

 

Financial Stability Plan

 

On February 10, 2009, Treasury announced the Financial Stability Plan (“FSP”) which, among other things, established a new Capital Assistance Program (“CAP”) through which eligible banking institutions will have access to Treasury capital as a bridge to private capital until market conditions normalize, and extended the Debt Guarantee Program of the TLGP to October 31, 2009, and the Transaction Account Guarantee Program of the TLGP to June 30, 2010.  As a complement to CAP, a new Public-Private Investment Fund on an initial scale of up to $500

 

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billion, which was later revised to be $30 billion, was announced to catalyze the removal of legacy assets from the balance sheets of financial institutions.  This fund will combine public and private capital with government financing to help free up capital to support new lending.  In addition, the existing Term Asset-Backed Securities Lending Facility (“TALF”) would be expanded (up to $1 trillion) in order to reduce credit spreads and restart the securitized credit markets that in recent years supported a substantial portion of lending to households, students, small businesses, and others.  Furthermore, the FSP proposed a new framework of governance and oversight to help ensure that banks receiving funds are held responsible for appropriate use of those funds through stronger conditions on lending, dividends and executive compensation along with enhanced reporting to the public.

 

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

 

On February 17, 2009, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (“ARRA”) was signed into law.  ARRA is intended to provide tax breaks for individuals and businesses, direct aid to distressed states and individuals, and provide infrastructure spending.  In addition, ARRA imposes new executive compensation and expenditure limits on all previous and future TARP CPP recipients and expands the class of employees to whom the limits and restrictions apply.  ARRA also provides the opportunity for additional repayment flexibility for existing TARP CPP recipients.  Among other things, ARRA prohibits the payment of bonuses, other incentive compensation and severance to certain highly paid employees (except in the form of restricted stock subject to specified limitations and conditions), and requires each TARP CPP recipient to comply with certain other executive compensation related requirements.  These provisions modify the executive compensation provisions that were included in EESA, and in most instances apply retroactively for so long as any obligation arising from financial assistance provided to the recipient under TARP CPP remains outstanding.

 

In addition, ARRA directs the Treasury to review previously-paid bonuses, retention awards and other compensation paid to the senior executive officers and certain other highly-compensated employees of each TARP CPP recipient to determine whether any such payments were excessive, inconsistent with the purposes of ARRA or the TARP, or otherwise contrary to the public interest.  If the Treasury determines that any such payments have been made by a TARP CPP recipient, the Treasury will seek to negotiate with the TARP CPP recipient and the subject employee for appropriate reimbursements to the U.S. government (not the TARP CPP recipient) with respect to any such compensation or bonuses.  ARRA also permits the Treasury, subject to consultation with the appropriate federal banking agency, to allow a TARP CPP recipient to repay any assistance previously provided to such TARP CPP recipient under the TARP, without regard to whether the TARP CPP recipient has replaced such funds from any source, and without regard to any waiting period.  Any TARP CPP recipient that repays its TARP assistance pursuant to this provision would no longer be subject to the executive compensation provisions under ARRA.

 

Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan

 

On February 18, 2009, the Treasury announced the Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan (“HASP”), which proposes to provide refinancing for certain homeowners, to support low mortgage rates by strengthening confidence in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and to establish a Homeowner Stability Initiative to reach at-risk homeowners.  Among other things, the Homeowner Stability Initiative would offer monetary incentive to mortgage servicers and mortgage holders for certain modifications of at-risk loans, and would establish an insurance fund designed to reduce foreclosures.

 

The Federal Deposit Insurance Act

 

As amended by the Federal Deposit Insurance Reform Act of 2005 (the “FDI Reform Act”), it requires the FDIC to set a ratio of deposit insurance reserves to estimated insured deposits, the designated reserve ratio (the “DRR”), for a particular year within a range of 1.15% to 1.50%.  Because the reserve ratio for the federal deposit insurance fund that covers both banks and savings associations (the “DIF”) ratio fell below 1.15% as of June 30, 2008 and was expected to remain below 1.15%, the FDI Reform Act required the FDIC to establish and implement a restoration plan that would restore the reserve ratio to at least 1.15% within five years.  In October 2008, the FDIC adopted a restoration plan (the “Restoration Plan”).  In February 2009, in light of the extraordinary challenges facing the banking industry, the FDIC amended the Restoration Plan to allow seven years for the reserve ratio to return to 1.15%.  In May 2009, the FDIC adopted a final rule imposing a five basis point special assessment based on each insured depository institution’s assets minus Tier 1 capital as of June 30, 2009.  The special assessment was collected on September 30, 2009.  In October 2009, the FDIC passed a final rule extending the term of the Restoration Plan to eight years.  The final rule also included a provision that implements a uniform three basis point increase in assessment rates, effective January 1, 2011, to help ensure that the reserve ratio returns to at least 1.15%

 

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within the eight year period called for by the Restoration Plan.  In addition, on November 17, 2009, the FDIC implemented a final rule requiring insured institutions to prepay their estimated quarterly risk-based assessments for the fourth quarter of 2009 and for all of 2010, 2011 and 2012.  Such prepaid assessments were paid on December 30, 2009, along with each institution’s quarterly risk-based deposit insurance assessment for the third quarter of 2009.

 

Future Legislation and Regulatory Initiatives

 

Various other legislative and regulatory initiatives, including proposals to overhaul the banking regulatory system are from time to time introduced in Congress and state legislatures, as well as regulatory agencies.  Currently, the Congress is actively considering significant changes to the manner of regulating financial institutions including combining one or more of the FRB, FDIC, Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision and creating a new consumer protection agency for financial products.  The current legislation being considered and other future legislation regarding financial institutions may change banking statutes and the operating environment of the Company and the Bank in substantial and unpredictable ways, and could increase or decrease the cost of doing business, limit or expand permissible activities or affect the competitive balance depending upon whether any of this potential legislation will be enacted, and if enacted, the effect that it or any implementing regulations, would have on the financial condition or results of operations of the Company or the Bank.  The nature and extent of future legislative and regulatory changes affecting financial institutions is unpredictable at this time.  The Company cannot determine the ultimate effect that such potential legislation, if enacted, would have upon its financial condition or operations.

 

Congaree Bancshares, Inc.

 

We own 100% of the outstanding capital stock of the Bank, and therefore we are considered to be a bank holding company under the federal Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 (the “Bank Holding Company Act”).  As a result, we are primarily subject to the supervision, examination and reporting requirements of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve (the “Federal Reserve”) under the Bank Holding Company Act and its regulations promulgated thereunder.  As a bank holding company located in South Carolina, the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions also regulates and monitors all significant aspects of our operations.

 

Permitted Activities. Under the Bank Holding Company Act, a bank holding company is generally permitted to engage in, or acquire direct or indirect control of more than 5% of the voting shares of any company engaged in, the following activities:

 

·                  banking or managing or controlling banks;

 

·                  furnishing services to or performing services for our subsidiaries; and

 

·                  any activity that the Federal Reserve determines to be so closely related to banking as to be a proper incident to the business of banking.

 

Activities that the Federal Reserve has found to be so closely related to banking as to be a proper incident to the business of banking include:

 

·                  factoring accounts receivable;

 

·                  making, acquiring, brokering or servicing loans and usual related activities;

 

·                  leasing personal or real property;

 

·                  operating a non-bank depository institution, such as a savings association;

 

·                  trust company functions;

 

·                  financial and investment advisory activities;

 

·                  conducting discount securities brokerage activities;

 

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·                  underwriting and dealing in government obligations and money market instruments;

 

·                  providing specified management consulting and counseling activities;

 

·                  performing selected data processing services and support services;

 

·                  acting as agent or broker in selling credit life insurance and other types of insurance in connection with credit transactions; and

 

·                  performing selected insurance underwriting activities.

 

As a bank holding company we also can elect to be treated as a “financial holding company,” which would allow us to engage in a broader array of activities.  In sum, a financial holding company can engage in activities that are financial in nature or incidental or complementary to financial activities, including insurance underwriting, sales and brokerage activities, providing financial and investment advisory services, underwriting services and limited merchant banking activities.  We have not sought financial holding company status, but may elect such status in the future as our business matures.  If we were to elect in writing for financial holding company status, each insured depository institution we control would have to be well capitalized, well managed and have at least a satisfactory rating under the CRA (discussed below).

 

The Federal Reserve has the authority to order a bank holding company or its subsidiaries to terminate any of these activities or to terminate its ownership or control of any subsidiary when it has reasonable cause to believe that the bank holding company’s continued ownership, activity or control constitutes a serious risk to the financial safety, soundness or stability of it or any of its bank subsidiaries.

 

Change in Control.  In addition, and subject to certain exceptions, the Bank Holding Company Act and the Change in Bank Control Act, together with regulations promulgated there under, require Federal Reserve approval prior to any person or company acquiring “control” of a bank holding company.  Control is conclusively presumed to exist if an individual or company acquires 25% or more of any class of voting securities of a bank holding company.  Following the relaxing of these restrictions by the Federal Reserve in September 2008, control will be rebuttably presumed to exist if a person acquires more than 33% of the total equity of a bank or bank holding company, of which it may own, control or have the power to vote not more than 15% of any class of voting securities.

 

Source of Strength.  In accordance with Federal Reserve Board policy, we are expected to act as a source of financial strength to the Bank and to commit resources to support the Bank in circumstances in which we might not otherwise do so.  If the Bank were to become “under-capitalized” (see below “Congaree State Bank—Prompt Corrective Action”), we would be required to provide a guarantee of the Bank’s plan to return to capital adequacy.  Additionally, under the Bank Holding Company Act, the Federal Reserve Board may require a bank holding company to terminate any activity or relinquish control of a nonbank subsidiary, other than a nonbank subsidiary of a bank, upon the Federal Reserve Board’s determination that such activity or control constitutes a serious risk to the financial soundness or stability of any depository institution subsidiary of the bank holding company.  Further, federal bank regulatory authorities have additional discretion to require a bank holding company to divest itself of any bank or nonbank subsidiaries if the agency determines that divestiture may aid the depository institution’s financial condition.  Further, any loans by a bank holding company to a subsidiary bank are subordinate in right of payment to deposits and certain other indebtedness of the subsidiary bank.  In the event of a bank holding company’s bankruptcy, any commitment by the bank holding company to a federal bank regulatory agency to maintain the capital of a subsidiary bank at a certain level would be assumed by the bankruptcy trustee and entitled to priority payment.

 

Capital Requirements.  The Federal Reserve Board imposes certain capital requirements on the bank holding company under the Bank Holding Company Act, including a minimum leverage ratio and a minimum ratio of “qualifying” capital to risk-weighted assets.  These requirements are essentially the same as those that apply to the Bank and are described below under “Congaree State Bank - Capital Regulations.”  Subject to our capital requirements and certain other restrictions, we are able to borrow money to make a capital contribution to the Bank, and these loans may be repaid from dividends paid from the Bank to the Company.  Our ability to pay dividends depends on the Bank’s ability to pay dividends to us, which is subject to regulatory restrictions as described below in “Congaree State Bank— Dividends.”  We are also able to raise capital for contribution to the Bank by issuing securities without having to receive regulatory approval, subject to compliance with federal and state securities laws.

 

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South Carolina State Regulation.  As a South Carolina bank holding company under the South Carolina Banking and Branching Efficiency Act, we are subject to limitations on sale or merger and to regulation by the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions, including a restriction on the ability to sell our Bank for at least five years from the date of its formation.  We are not required to obtain the approval of the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions prior to acquiring the capital stock of a national bank, but we must notify them at least 15 days prior to doing so.  We must receive the Board’s approval prior to engaging in the acquisition of a South Carolina state chartered bank or another South Carolina bank holding company.

 

Congaree State Bank

 

The Bank operates as a state bank incorporated under the laws of the State of South Carolina and is subject to examination by the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions.  Deposits in the Bank are insured by the FDIC up to a maximum amount, which is currently $250,000 for each non-retirement depositor (though December 31, 2013) and $250,000 for certain retirement-account depositors.  The Bank is participating in the FDIC’s Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program (discussed below in greater detail) which, in part, fully insures non-interest bearing transaction accounts.

 

The South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions and the FDIC regulate or monitor virtually all areas of the Bank’s operations, including:

 

·                  security devices and procedures;

 

·                  adequacy of capitalization and loss reserves;

 

·                  loans;

 

·                  investments;

 

·                  borrowings;

 

·                  deposits;

 

·                  mergers;

 

·                  issuances of securities;

 

·                  payment of dividends;

 

·                  interest rates payable on deposits;

 

·                  interest rates or fees chargeable on loans;

 

·                  establishment of branches;

 

·                  corporate reorganizations;

 

·                  maintenance of books and records; and

 

·                  adequacy of staff training to carry on safe lending and deposit gathering practices.

 

The South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions requires the Bank to maintain specified capital ratios and imposes limitations on the Bank’s aggregate investment in real estate, bank premises, and furniture and fixtures.  The South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions also requires the Bank to prepare quarterly reports on the Bank’s financial condition in compliance with its minimum standards and procedures.

 

All insured institutions must undergo regular on site examinations by their appropriate banking agency.  The cost of examinations of insured depository institutions and any affiliates may be assessed by the appropriate agency against each institution or affiliate as it deems necessary or appropriate.  Insured institutions are required to submit annual reports to the FDIC, their federal regulatory agency, and their state supervisor when applicable.  The FDIC has developed a method for insured depository institutions to provide supplemental disclosure of the estimated fair market value of assets and liabilities, to the extent feasible and practicable, in any balance sheet, financial

 

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statement, report of condition or any other report of any insured depository institution.  The FDIC Improvement Act also requires the federal banking regulatory agencies to prescribe, by regulation, standards for all insured depository institutions and depository institution holding companies relating, among other things, to the following:

 

·                  internal controls;

 

·                  information systems and audit systems;

 

·                  loan documentation;

 

·                  credit underwriting;

 

·                  interest rate risk exposure; and

 

·                  asset quality.

 

Prompt Corrective Action.  As an insured depository institution, the Bank is required to comply with the capital requirements promulgated under the Federal Deposit Insurance Act and the regulations thereunder, which set forth five capital categories, each with specific regulatory consequences.  Under these regulations, the categories are:

 

·                                          Well Capitalized - The institution exceeds the required minimum level for each relevant capital measure.  A well capitalized institution is one (i) having a total capital ratio of 10% or greater, (ii) having a tier 1 capital ratio of 6% or greater, (iii) having a leverage capital ratio of 5% or greater and (iv) that is not subject to any order or written directive to meet and maintain a specific capital level for any capital measure.

 

·                                          Adequately Capitalized - The institution meets the required minimum level for each relevant capital measure.  No capital distribution may be made that would result in the institution becoming undercapitalized.  An adequately capitalized institution is one (i) having a total capital ratio of 8% or greater, (ii) having a tier 1 capital ratio of 4% or greater and (iii) having a leverage capital ratio of 4% or greater or a leverage capital ratio of 3% or greater if the institution is rated composite 1 under the CAMELS (Capital, Assets, Management, Earnings, Liquidity and Sensitivity to market risk) rating system.

 

·                                          Undercapitalized - The institution fails to meet the required minimum level for any relevant capital measure.  An undercapitalized institution is one (i) having a total capital ratio of less than 8% or (ii) having a tier 1 capital ratio of less than 4% or (iii) having a leverage capital ratio of less than 4%, or if the institution is rated a composite 1 under the CAMELS rating system, a leverage capital ratio of less than 3%.

 

·                                          Significantly Undercapitalized - The institution is significantly below the required minimum level for any relevant capital measure.  A significantly undercapitalized institution is one (i) having a total capital ratio of less than 6% or (ii) having a tier 1 capital ratio of less than 3% or (iii) having a leverage capital ratio of less than 3%.

 

·                                          Critically Undercapitalized - The institution fails to meet a critical capital level set by the appropriate federal banking agency.  A critically undercapitalized institution is one having a ratio of tangible equity to total assets that is equal to or less than 2%.

 

If the FDIC determines, after notice and an opportunity for hearing, that the Bank is in an unsafe or unsound condition, the regulator is authorized to reclassify the Bank to the next lower capital category (other than critically undercapitalized) and require the submission of a plan to correct the unsafe or unsound condition.

 

If the Bank is not well capitalized, it cannot accept brokered deposits without prior FDIC approval.  Even if approved, rate restrictions apply governing the rate the bank may be permitted to pay on the brokered deposits.  In addition, a bank that is undercapitalized cannot offer an effective yield in excess of 75 basis points over the “national rate” paid on deposits (including brokered deposits, if approval is granted for the bank to accept them) of comparable size and maturity.  The “national rate” is defined as a simple average of rates paid by insured depository institutions and branches for which data are available and is published weekly by the FDIC.  Institutions subject to the restrictions that believe they are operating in an area where the rates paid on deposits are higher than the “national rate” can use the local market to determine the prevailing rate if they seek and receive a determination

 

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from the FDIC that it is operating in a high-rate area.  Regardless of the determination, institutions must use the national rate to determine conformance for all deposits outside their market area.

 

Moreover, if the Bank becomes less than adequately capitalized, it must adopt a capital restoration plan acceptable to the FDIC.  The Bank also would become subject to increased regulatory oversight, and is increasingly restricted in the scope of its permissible activities.  Each company having control over an undercapitalized institution also must provide a limited guarantee that the institution will comply with its capital restoration plan.  Except under limited circumstances consistent with an accepted capital restoration plan, an undercapitalized institution may not grow.  An undercapitalized institution may not acquire another institution, establish additional branch offices or engage in any new line of business unless determined by the appropriate Federal banking agency to be consistent with an accepted capital restoration plan, or unless the FDIC determines that the proposed action will further the purpose of prompt corrective action.  The appropriate federal banking agency may take any action authorized for a significantly undercapitalized institution if an undercapitalized institution fails to submit an acceptable capital restoration plan or fails in any material respect to implement a plan accepted by the agency.  A critically undercapitalized institution is subject to having a receiver or conservator appointed to manage its affairs and for loss of its charter to conduct banking activities.

 

An insured depository institution may not pay a management fee to a bank holding company controlling that institution or any other person having control of the institution if, after making the payment, the institution, would be undercapitalized.  In addition, an institution cannot make a capital distribution, such as a dividend or other distribution that is in substance a distribution of capital to the owners of the institution if following such a distribution the institution would be undercapitalized.  Thus, if payment of such a management fee or the making of such would cause the Bank to become undercapitalized, it could not pay a management fee or dividend to us.

 

As of December 31, 2009, the Bank was deemed to be “well capitalized.”

 

Standards for Safety and Soundness.     The Federal Deposit Insurance Act also requires the federal banking regulatory agencies to prescribe, by regulation or guideline, operational and managerial standards for all insured depository institutions relating to: (i) internal controls, information systems and internal audit systems; (ii) loan documentation; (iii) credit underwriting; (iv) interest rate risk exposure; and (v) asset growth.  The agencies also must prescribe standards for asset quality, earnings, and stock valuation, as well as standards for compensation, fees and benefits.  The federal banking agencies have adopted regulations and Interagency Guidelines Prescribing Standards for Safety and Soundness to implement these required standards.  These guidelines set forth the safety and soundness standards that the federal banking agencies use to identify and address problems at insured depository institutions before capital becomes impaired.  Under the regulations, if the FDIC determines that the Bank fails to meet any standards prescribed by the guidelines, the agency may require the Bank to submit to the agency an acceptable plan to achieve compliance with the standard, as required by the FDIC.  The final regulations establish deadlines for the submission and review of such safety and soundness compliance plans.

 

Insurance of Accounts and Regulation by the FDIC.   The Bank’s deposits are insured up to applicable limits by the Deposit Insurance Fund of the FDIC.  The Deposit Insurance Fund is the successor to the Bank Insurance Fund and the Savings Association Insurance Fund, which were merged effective March 31, 2006.  As insurer, the FDIC imposes deposit insurance premiums and is authorized to conduct examinations of and to require reporting by FDIC insured institutions.  It also may prohibit any FDIC insured institution from engaging in any activity the FDIC determines by regulation or order to pose a serious risk to the insurance fund.  The FDIC also has the authority to initiate enforcement actions against savings institutions, after giving the Office of Thrift Supervision an opportunity to take such action, and may terminate the deposit insurance if it determines that the institution has engaged in unsafe or unsound practices or is in an unsafe or unsound condition.

 

Due to the large number of recent bank failures, and the FDIC’s new Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program, the FDIC adopted a revised risk-based deposit insurance assessment schedule in February 2009, which raised deposit insurance premiums.  The FDIC also implemented a five basis point special assessment of each insured depository institution’s assets minus Tier 1 capital as of June 30, 2009, which special assessment amount was capped at 10 basis points times the institution’s assessment base for the second quarter of 2009.  In addition, the FDIC recently announced a rule that requires financial institutions like us to prepay their estimated quarterly risk-based assessments for the fourth quarter of 2009 and for all of 2010 through and including 2012 to re-capitalize the Deposit Insurance Fund.  The FDIC may exercise its discretion as supervisor and insurer to exempt an institution from the prepayment requirement if the FDIC determines that the prepayment would adversely affect the safety and soundness of the institution.  We requested exemption from the prepayment requirement and received such

 

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exemption from the FDIC.  During 2009, we paid $290,845 in deposit insurance, which included regular premiums and the special assessment.  The rule also provides for increasing the FDIC-assessment rates by three basis points effective January 1, 2011.

 

FDIC insured institutions are required to pay a Financing Corporation assessment, in order to fund the interest on bonds issued to resolve thrift failures in the 1980s.  For the first quarter of 2009, the Financing Corporation assessment equaled 1.14 basis points for domestic deposits.  These assessments, which may be revised based upon the level of deposits, will continue until the bonds mature in the years 2017 through 2019.

 

The FDIC may terminate the deposit insurance of any insured depository institution, including the Bank, if it determines after a hearing that the institution has engaged in unsafe or unsound practices, is in an unsafe or unsound condition to continue operations or has violated any applicable law, regulation, rule, order or condition imposed by the FDIC or the OCC.  It also may suspend deposit insurance temporarily during the hearing process for the permanent termination of insurance, if the institution has no tangible capital.  If insurance of accounts is terminated, the accounts at the institution at the time of the termination, less subsequent withdrawals, shall continue to be insured for a period of six months to two years, as determined by the FDIC.  Management of the Bank is not aware of any practice, condition or violation that might lead to termination of the bank’s deposit insurance.

 

Transactions with Affiliates and Insiders.  The Company is a legal entity separate and distinct from the Bank and its other subsidiaries.  Various legal limitations restrict the Bank from lending or otherwise supplying funds to the Company or its non-bank subsidiaries.  The Company and the Bank are subject to Sections 23A and 23B of the Federal Reserve Act and Federal Reserve Regulation W.  Section 23A of the Federal Reserve Act places limits on the amount of loans or extensions of credit to, or investments in, or certain other transactions with, affiliates and on the amount of advances to third parties collateralized by the securities or obligations of affiliates.  The aggregate of all covered transactions is limited in amount, as to any one affiliate, to 10% of the Bank’s capital and surplus and, as to all affiliates combined, to 20% of the Bank’s capital and surplus.  Furthermore, within the foregoing limitations as to amount, each covered transaction must meet specified collateral requirements.  The Bank is forbidden to purchase low quality assets from an affiliate.

 

Section 23B of the Federal Reserve Act, among other things, prohibits an institution from engaging in certain transactions with certain affiliates unless the transactions are on terms substantially the same, or at least as favorable to such institution or its subsidiaries, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions with nonaffiliated companies.  The Bank is also subject to certain restrictions on extensions of credit to executive officers, directors, certain principal shareholders, and their related interests.  Such extensions of credit (i) must be made on substantially the same terms, including interest rates and collateral, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions with third parties and (ii) must not involve more than the normal risk of repayment or present other unfavorable features.

 

Regulation W generally excludes all non-bank and non-savings association subsidiaries of banks from treatment as affiliates, except to the extent that the Federal Reserve Board decides to treat these subsidiaries as affiliates. The regulation also limits the amount of loans that can be purchased by a bank from an affiliate to not more than 100% of the bank’s capital and surplus.

 

The Bank is also subject to certain restrictions on extensions of credit to executive officers, directors, certain principal shareholders, and their related interests.  Such extensions of credit (i) must be made on substantially the same terms, including interest rates and collateral, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions with third parties and (ii) must not involve more than the normal risk of repayment or present other unfavorable features.

 

Branching.  Under current South Carolina law, we may open branch offices throughout South Carolina with the prior approval of the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions.  In addition, with prior regulatory approval, the Bank will be able to acquire existing banking operations in South Carolina.  Furthermore, federal legislation has been passed that permits interstate branching by banks if allowed by state law, and interstate merging by banks.  However, South Carolina law, with limited exceptions, currently permits branching across state lines only through interstate mergers.

 

Anti-Tying Restrictions.  Under amendments to the Bank Holding Company Act and Federal Reserve regulations, a bank is prohibited from engaging in certain tying or reciprocity arrangements with its customers.  In general, a bank may not extend credit, lease, sell property, or furnish any services or fix or vary the consideration for

 

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these on the condition that (i) the customer obtain or provide some additional credit, property, or services from or to the bank, the bank holding company or subsidiaries thereof or (ii) the customer may not obtain some other credit, property, or services from a competitor, except to the extent reasonable conditions are imposed to assure the soundness of the credit extended.  Certain arrangements are permissible: a bank may offer combined-balance products and may otherwise offer more favorable terms if a customer obtains two or more traditional bank products; and certain foreign transactions are exempt from the general rule.  A bank holding company or any bank affiliate also is subject to anti-tying requirements in connection with electronic benefit transfer services.

 

Community Reinvestment Act.  The Community Reinvestment Act requires that, in connection with examinations of financial institutions within their respective jurisdictions, a financial institution’s primary regulator, which is the FDIC for the bank, shall evaluate the record of each financial institution in meeting the credit needs of its local community, including low and moderate income neighborhoods.  These factors are also considered in evaluating mergers, acquisitions, and applications to open a branch or facility.  Failure to adequately meet these criteria could impose additional requirements and limitations on our Bank.  Additionally, we must publicly disclose the terms of various Community Reinvestment Act-related agreements.

 

Finance Subsidiaries.  Under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (the “GLBA”), subject to certain conditions imposed by their respective banking regulators, national and state-chartered banks are permitted to form “financial subsidiaries” that may conduct financial or incidental activities, thereby permitting bank subsidiaries to engage in certain activities that previously were impermissible.  The GLBA imposes several safeguards and restrictions on financial subsidiaries, including that the parent bank’s equity investment in the financial subsidiary be deducted from the bank’s assets and tangible equity for purposes of calculating the bank’s capital adequacy.  In addition, the GLBA imposes new restrictions on transactions between a bank and its financial subsidiaries similar to restrictions applicable to transactions between banks and non-bank affiliates.

 

Consumer Protection Regulations.  Activities of the Bank are subject to a variety of statutes and regulations designed to protect consumers.  Interest and other charges collected or contracted for by the Bank are subject to state usury laws and federal laws concerning interest rates.  The Bank’s loan operations are also subject to federal laws applicable to credit transactions, such as the:

 

·                  The federal Truth-In-Lending Act, governing disclosures of credit terms to consumer borrowers;

 

·                  The Home Mortgage Disclosure Act of 1975, requiring financial institutions to provide information to enable the public and public officials to determine whether a financial institution is fulfilling its obligation to help meet the housing needs of the community it serves;

 

·                  The Equal Credit Opportunity Act, prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, creed or other prohibited factors in extending credit;

 

·                  The Fair Credit Reporting Act of 1978, as amended by the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, governing the use and provision of information to credit reporting agencies, certain identity theft protections and certain credit and other disclosures;

 

·                  The Fair Debt Collection Act, governing the manner in which consumer debts may be collected by collection agencies; and

 

·                  The rules and regulations of the various federal agencies charged with the responsibility of implementing these federal laws.

 

The deposit operations of the Bank also are subject to:

 

·                  the Right to Financial Privacy Act, which imposes a duty to maintain confidentiality of consumer financial records and prescribes procedures for complying with administrative subpoenas of financial records; and

 

·                  the Electronic Funds Transfer Act and Regulation E issued by the Federal Reserve Board to implement that Act, which governs automatic deposits to and withdrawals from deposit accounts and customers’ rights and liabilities arising from the use of automated teller machines and other electronic banking services.

 

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Enforcement Powers.  The Bank and its “institution-affiliated parties,” including its management, employees, agents, independent contractors, and consultants such as attorneys and accountants and others who participate in the conduct of the financial institution’s affairs, are subject to potential civil and criminal penalties for violations of law, regulations or written orders of a government agency.  These practices can include the failure of an institution to timely file required reports or the filing of false or misleading information or the submission of inaccurate reports.  Civil penalties may be as high as $1,375,000 a day for such violations.  Criminal penalties for some financial institution crimes have been increased to 20 years.  In addition, regulators are provided with greater flexibility to commence enforcement actions against institutions and institution-affiliated parties.  Possible enforcement actions include the termination of deposit insurance.  Furthermore, banking agencies’ power to issue cease-and-desist orders were expanded.  Such orders may, among other things, require affirmative action to correct any harm resulting from a violation or practice, including restitution, reimbursement, indemnifications or guarantees against loss.  A financial institution may also be ordered to restrict its growth, dispose of certain assets, rescind agreements or contracts, or take other actions as determined by the ordering agency to be appropriate.

 

Anti-Money Laundering.  Financial institutions must maintain anti-money laundering programs that include established internal policies, procedures, and controls; a designated compliance officer; an ongoing employee training program; and testing of the program by an independent audit function. The Company and the Bank are also prohibited from entering into specified financial transactions and account relationships and must meet enhanced standards for due diligence and “knowing your customer” in their dealings with foreign financial institutions and foreign customers.  Financial institutions must take reasonable steps to conduct enhanced scrutiny of account relationships to guard against money laundering and to report any suspicious transactions, and recent laws provide law enforcement authorities with increased access to financial information maintained by banks.  Anti-money laundering obligations have been substantially strengthened as a result of the USA Patriot Act, enacted in 2001 and renewed in 2006.  Bank regulators routinely examine institutions for compliance with these obligations and are required to consider compliance in connection with the regulatory review of applications.  The regulatory authorities have been active in imposing “cease and desist” orders and money penalty sanctions against institutions found to be violating these obligations.

 

USA PATRIOT Act.  The USA PATRIOT Act became effective on October 26, 2001, amended, in part, the Bank Secrecy Act, and provides, in part, for the facilitation of information sharing among governmental entities and financial institutions for the purpose of combating terrorism and money laundering by enhancing anti-money laundering and financial transparency laws, as well as enhanced information collection tools and enforcement mechanics for the U.S. government, including: (i) requiring standards for verifying customer identification at account opening; (ii) rules to promote cooperation among financial institutions, regulators, and law enforcement entities in identifying parties that may be involved in terrorism or money laundering; (iii) reports by nonfinancial trades and businesses filed with the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network for transactions exceeding $10,000; and (iv) filing suspicious activities reports by brokers and dealers if they believe a customer may be violating U.S. laws and regulations and requires enhanced due diligence requirements for financial institutions that administer, maintain, or manage private bank accounts or correspondent accounts for non-U.S. persons.  Bank regulators routinely examine institutions for compliance with these obligations and are required to consider compliance in connection with the regulatory review of applications.

 

Under the USA PATRIOT Act, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) can send our banking regulatory agencies lists of the names of persons suspected of involvement in terrorist activities.  The Bank can be requested, to search its records for any relationships or transactions with persons on those lists.  If the Bank finds any relationships or transactions, it must file a suspicious activity report and contact the FBI.

 

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”), which is a division of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, is responsible for helping to insure that United States entities do not engage in transactions with “enemies” of the United States, as defined by various Executive Orders and Acts of Congress.  OFAC has sent, and will send, our banking regulatory agencies lists of names of persons and organizations suspected of aiding, harboring or engaging in terrorist acts.  If the Bank finds a name on any transaction, account or wire transfer that is on an OFAC list, it must freeze such account, file a suspicious activity report and notify the FBI.  The Bank has appointed an OFAC compliance officer to oversee the inspection of its accounts and the filing of any notifications.  The Bank actively checks high-risk OFAC areas such as new accounts, wire transfers and customer files.  The Bank performs these checks utilizing software, which is updated each time a modification is made to the lists provided by OFAC and other agencies of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons.

 

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Privacy and Credit ReportingFinancial institutions are required to disclose their policies for collecting and protecting confidential information.  Customers generally may prevent financial institutions from sharing nonpublic personal financial information with nonaffiliated third parties except under narrow circumstances, such as the processing of transactions requested by the consumer or when the financial institution is jointly sponsoring a product or service with a nonaffiliated third party.  Additionally, financial institutions generally may not disclose consumer account numbers to any nonaffiliated third party for use in telemarketing, direct mail marketing or other marketing to consumers.  It is the Bank’s policy not to disclose any personal information unless required by law.

 

Like other lending institutions, the Bank utilizes credit bureau data in its underwriting activities.  Use of such data is regulated under the Federal Credit Reporting Act on a uniform, nationwide basis, including credit reporting, prescreening, sharing of information between affiliates, and the use of credit data.  The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003 (the “FACT Act”) authorizes states to enact identity theft laws that are not inconsistent with the conduct required by the provisions of the FACT Act.

 

Payment of Dividends. A South Carolina state bank may not pay dividends from its capital.  All dividends must be paid out of undivided profits then on hand, after deducting expenses, including reserves for losses and bad debts.  The Bank is authorized to pay cash dividends up to 100% of net income in any calendar year without obtaining the prior approval of the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions, provided that the Bank received a composite rating of one or two at the last federal or state regulatory examination.  The Bank must obtain approval from the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions prior to the payment of any other cash dividends.  In addition, under the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act, the Bank may not pay a dividend if, after paying the dividend, the Bank would be undercapitalized.

 

Check 21.  The Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act gives “substitute checks,” such as a digital image of a check and copies made from that image, the same legal standing as the original paper check.  Some of the major provisions include:

 

·                                          allowing check truncation without making it mandatory;

 

·                                          demanding that every financial institution communicate to account holders in writing a description of its substitute check processing program and their rights under the law;

 

·                                          legalizing substitutions for and replacements of paper checks without agreement from consumers;

 

·                                          retaining in place the previously mandated electronic collection and return of checks between financial institutions only when individual agreements are in place;

 

·                                          requiring that when accountholders request verification, financial institutions produce the original check (or a copy that accurately represents the original) and demonstrate that the account debit was accurate and valid; and

 

·                                          requiring the re-crediting of funds to an individual’s account on the next business day after a consumer proves that the financial institution has erred.

 

Effect of Governmental Monetary Policies.  Our earnings are affected by domestic economic conditions and the monetary and fiscal policies of the United States government and its agencies.  The Federal Reserve bank’s monetary policies have had, and are likely to continue to have, an important impact on the operating results of commercial banks through its power to implement national monetary policy in order, among other things, to curb inflation or combat a recession.  The monetary policies of the Federal Reserve Board have major effects upon the levels of bank loans, investments and deposits through its open market operations in United States government securities and through its regulation of the discount rate on borrowings of member banks and the reserve requirements against member bank deposits.  It is not possible to predict the nature or impact of future changes in monetary and fiscal policies.

 

Proposed Legislation and Regulatory Action.  New regulations and statutes are regularly proposed that contain wide-ranging proposals for altering the structures, regulations, and competitive relationships of the nation’s financial institutions.  We cannot predict whether or in what form any proposed regulation or statute will be adopted or the extent to which our business may be affected by any new regulation or statute.

 

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Item 1A.  Risk Factors.

 

Difficult market conditions in our market and economic trends have adversely affected our industry and our business and may continue to do so.

 

Our business has been directly affected by market conditions, trends in industry and finance, legislative and regulatory changes, and changes in governmental monetary and fiscal policies and inflation, all of which are beyond our control.  The current economic downturn, increase in unemployment and other events that have negatively affected both household and corporate incomes, both nationally and locally, have decreased the demand for loans and our other products and services and have increased the number of customers who fail to pay interest and/or principal on their loans.  As a result, we have experienced significant declines in our real estate markets with decreasing prices and increasing delinquencies and foreclosures, which have negatively affected the credit performance of our loans and resulted in increases in the level of our nonperforming assets and charge-offs of problem loans.  At the same time, competition among depository institutions for deposits and quality loans has increased significantly.  Bank and bank holding company stock prices have been negatively affected, as has the ability of banks and bank holding companies to raise capital or borrow in the debt markets compared to recent years.  These market conditions and the tightening of credit have led to increased deficiencies in our loan portfolio, increased market volatility and widespread reduction in general business activity.

 

Our future success significantly depends upon the growth in population, income levels, deposits and housing starts in our market areas.  Unlike many larger institutions, we are not able to spread the risks of unfavorable economic conditions across a large number of diversified economies and geographic locations.  If the markets in which we operate do not recover and grow as anticipated or if prevailing economic conditions locally or nationally do not improve, our business may continue to be negatively impacted.

 

A significant portion of our loan portfolio is secured by real estate, and events that negatively affect the real estate market could hurt our business.

 

Beginning in the second half of 2007 and continuing through 2009, the financial markets were beset by significant volatility associated with subprime mortgages, including adverse impacts on credit quality and liquidity within the financial markets.  The volatility has been exacerbated by a significant decline in the value of real estate.  As of December 31, 2009, approximately 86.8% of our loans were secured by real estate mortgages.  The real estate collateral for these loans provides an alternate source of repayment in the event of default by the borrower and may deteriorate in value during the time the credit is extended.  We do not generally originate traditional long term residential mortgages, but we do issue traditional second mortgage residential real estate loans and home equity lines of credit.  A further weakening of the real estate market in our market areas could result in an increase in the number of borrowers who default on their loans and a reduction in the value of the collateral securing their loans, which in turn could have an adverse effect on our profitability and asset quality.  If we are required to liquidate the collateral securing a loan to satisfy the debt during a period of reduced real estate values, our earnings and shareholder’s equity could be adversely affected.  Acts of nature, including hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes, fires and floods, which may cause uninsured damage and other loss of value to real estate that secures these loans, may also negatively impact our financial condition.

 

We are exposed to higher credit risk by commercial real estate, construction, and commercial lending.

 

Commercial real estate, commercial, and construction lending usually involves higher credit risks than that of single-family residential lending.  As of December 31, 2009, the following loan types accounted for the stated percentages of our total loan portfolio: commercial real estate — 30.1% ; construction — 15.5%; and commercial — 11.1%.  These types of loans involve larger loan balances to a single borrower or groups of related borrowers.  Commercial real estate loans may be affected to a greater extent than residential loans by adverse conditions in real estate markets or the economy because commercial real estate borrowers’ ability to repay their loans depends on successful development of their properties, in addition to the factors affecting residential real estate borrowers.  These loans also involve greater risk because they generally are not fully amortizing over the loan period, but have a balloon payment due at maturity.  A borrower’s ability to make a balloon payment typically will depend on being able to either refinance the loan or sell the underlying property in a timely manner.

 

Risk of loss on a construction loan depends largely upon whether our initial estimate of the property’s value at completion of construction equals or exceeds the cost of the property construction (including interest), the availability of permanent take-out financing, and the builder’s ability to ultimately sell the property.  During the

 

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construction phase, a number of factors can result in delays and cost overruns.  If estimates of value are inaccurate or if actual construction costs exceed estimates, the value of the property securing the loan may be insufficient to ensure full repayment when completed through a permanent loan or by seizure of collateral.

 

Commercial and industrial loans are typically based on the borrowers’ ability to repay the loans from the cash flow of their businesses.  These loans may involve greater risk because the availability of funds to repay each loan depends substantially on the success of the business itself.  In addition, the collateral securing the loans have the following characteristics: (a) they depreciate over time, (b) they are difficult to appraise and liquidate, and (c) they fluctuate in value based on the success of the business.

 

Commercial real estate, construction, and commercial loans are more susceptible to a risk of loss during a downturn in the business cycle.  Our underwriting, review and monitoring cannot eliminate all of the risks related to these loans.  The banking regulators are giving commercial real estate lending greater scrutiny, and may require banks with higher levels of commercial real estate loans to implement improved underwriting, internal controls, risk management policies and portfolio stress testing, as well as possibly higher levels of allowances for losses and capital levels as a result of commercial real estate lending growth and exposures.

 

Our decisions regarding credit risk and reserves for loan losses may materially and adversely affect our business.

 

Making loans and other extensions of credit is an essential element of our business.  Although we seek to mitigate risks inherent in lending by adhering to specific underwriting practices, our loans and other extensions of credit may not be repaid.  The risk of nonpayment is affected by a number of factors, including:

 

·                  the duration of the credit;

·                  credit risks of a particular customer;

·                  changes in economic and industry conditions; and

·                  in the case of a collateralized loan, risks resulting from uncertainties about the future value of the collateral.

 

We attempt to maintain an appropriate allowance for loan losses to provide for potential losses in our loan portfolio.  We periodically determine the amount of the allowance based on consideration of several factors, including:

 

·                  an ongoing review of the quality, mix, and size of our overall loan portfolio;

·                  our historical loan loss experience;

·                  evaluation of economic conditions;

·                  regular reviews of loan delinquencies and loan portfolio quality; and

·                  the amount and quality of collateral, including guarantees, securing the loans.

 

There is no precise method of predicting credit losses since any estimate of loan losses is necessarily subjective and the accuracy of the estimate depends on the outcome of future events.  Therefore, we face the risk that charge-offs in future periods will exceed our allowance for loan losses and that additional increases in the allowance for loan losses will be required.  Additions to the allowance for loan losses would result in an increase of our net loss, and possibly a decrease in our capital.

 

While we generally underwrite the loans in our portfolio in accordance with our own internal underwriting guidelines and regulatory supervisory guidelines, in certain circumstances we have made loans which exceed either our internal underwriting guidelines, supervisory guidelines, or both.  As of December 31, 2009, we had $7,939,201 in loans that had loan-to-value ratios that exceeded regulatory supervisory guidelines.  In addition, supervisory limits on commercial loan to value exceptions are set at 30% of our Bank’s capital.  At December 31, 2009, we had $3,964,252 in commercial loans that exceeded the supervisory loan to value ratio.  The number of loans in our portfolio with loan-to-value ratios in excess of supervisory guidelines, our internal guidelines, or both could increase the risk of delinquencies and defaults in our portfolio.

 

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Lack of seasoning of our loan portfolio may increase the risk of credit defaults in the future.

 

Due to our short operating history, all of the loans in our loan portfolio and of our lending relationships are of relatively recent origin.  In general, loans do not begin to show signs of credit deterioration or default until they have been outstanding for some period of time, a process we refer to as “seasoning.”  As a result, a portfolio of older loans will usually behave more predictably than a newer portfolio.  Because our loan portfolio is relatively new, the current level of delinquencies and defaults may not be representative of the level that will prevail when the portfolio becomes more seasoned, which may be higher than current levels.  If delinquencies and defaults increase, we may be required to increase our provision for loan losses, which would adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.

 

Our net interest income could be negatively affected by the lower level of short-term interest rates, recent developments in the credit and real estate markets and competition in our market area.

 

As a financial institution, our earnings significantly depend upon our net interest income, which is the difference between the income that we earn on interest-earning assets, such as loans and investment securities, and the expense that we pay on interest-bearing liabilities, such as deposits and borrowings.  Therefore, any change in general market interest rates, including changes resulting from changes in the Federal Reserve’s fiscal and monetary policies, affects us more than non-financial institutions and can have a significant effect on our net interest income and net income.

 

The Federal Reserve reduced interest rates on three occasions in 2007 by a total of 100 basis points, to 4.25%, and by another 400 basis points, to a range of 0% to 0.25%, during 2008.  Rates remained steady for 2009.  On March 18, 2009, the Federal Reserve announced its decision to purchase as much as $300 billion of long-term treasuries in an effort to maintain low interest rates.  Approximately 53.6% of our loans were variable rate loans at December 31, 2009.  The interest rates on a significant segment of these loans decrease when the Federal Reserve reduces interest rates, while the interest that we earn on our assets may not change in the same amount or at the same rates.  Accordingly, increases in interest rates may reduce our net interest income.  In addition, an increase in interest rates may decrease the demand for loans.  Furthermore, increases in interest rates will add to the expenses of our borrowers, which may adversely affect their ability to repay their loans with us.

 

Increased nonperforming loans and the decrease in interest rates reduced our net interest income during 2009 and could cause additional pressure on net interest income in future periods.  This reduction in net interest income may also be exacerbated by the high level of competition that we face in our primary market areas.  Any significant reduction in our net interest income could negatively affect our business and could have a material adverse effect on our capital, financial condition and results of operations.

 

We expect to receive a consent order that will require us to take certain actions.

 

The FDIC completed a safety and soundness examination of the Bank in the fourth quarter of 2009.  Based on discussions with the FDIC and the Bank’s current financial condition, we expect to receive a consent order from the FDIC during 2010 that could require the Bank to take certain actions to address concerns raised in the examination.  These actions may include but are not limited to addressing asset quality, capital adequacy, earnings, management effectiveness, liquidity, and sensitivity to market risk.  Furthermore, a consent order may establish new minimum capital ratios for the Bank.  If these ratios are not met, it may change how the Bank is categorized.  If the Bank were to become subject to a consent order, and if the Bank were to fail to comply with the requirements, it may be subject to further regulatory action.

 

Recent legislative and regulatory initiatives to address the current difficult market and economic conditions may not achieve the desired effect.

 

Beginning in October 2008, a host of legislation and regulation has been enacted in response to the financial crises affecting the banking system and financial markets and the threats to investment banks and other financial institutions.  These include the following:

 

·                  On October 3, 2008, President Bush signed into law Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (“EESA”), under which the U.S. Treasury Department has the authority, among other things, to purchase up to $700 billion of mortgages, mortgage-backed securities and certain other financial

 

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instruments from financial institutions under the Troubled Asset Relief Program for the purpose of stabilizing and providing liquidity to the U.S. financial markets.

 

·                  On October 14, 2008, the Treasury Department announced the Capital Purchase Plan under the EESA under which it would purchase senior preferred stock and warrants to purchase common stock from participating financial institutions.

 

·                  On November 21, 2008, the FDIC adopted a Final Rule with respect to its Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program under which the FDIC will guarantee certain “newly-issued unsecured debt” of banks and certain holding companies and also guarantee, on an unlimited basis, non-interest bearing bank transaction accounts.

 

·                  On February 10, 2009, the Treasury Department announced the Financial Stability Plan under the EESA, which is intended to further stabilize financial institutions and stimulate lending across a broad range of economic sectors.

 

·                  On February 18, 2009, President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, a broad economic stimulus package that included additional restrictions on, and potential additional regulation of, financial institutions.

 

·                  On March 18, 2009, the Federal Reserve announced its decision to purchase as much as $300 billion of long-term treasuries in an effort to maintain low interest rates.

 

·                  On March 23, 2009, the Treasury Department announced the Public-Private Investment Program, which will purchase real estate related loans from banks and securities from the broader markets, and is intended to create a market for those distressed debt and securities.

 

Each of these programs was implemented to help stabilize and provide liquidity to the financial system.  However, the long-term effect that these or any other governmental program may have on the financial markets or our business or financial performance is unknown.  A continuation or worsening of current financial market conditions could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations, access to credit or the trading price of our common stock.

 

Regulatory reform of the U.S. banking system may adversely affect us.

 

On June 17, 2009, the Obama Administration announced a comprehensive plan for regulatory reform of the financial services industry.  The plan set forth five separate initiatives that will be the focus of the regulatory reform, including requiring strong supervision and appropriate regulation of all financial firms, strengthening regulation of core markets and market infrastructure, strengthening consumer protection, strengthening regulatory powers to effectively manage failing institutions and improving international regulatory standards and cooperation.

 

Other recent developments include:

 

·                  the Federal Reserve’s proposed guidance on incentive compensation policies at banking organizations; and

·                  proposals to limit a lender’s ability to foreclose on mortgages or make those foreclosures less economically viable, including by allowing Chapter 13 bankruptcy plans to “cram down” the value of certain mortgages on a consumer’s principal residence to its market value and/or reset interest rates and monthly payments to permit defaulting debtors to remain in their home.

 

These initiatives may increase our expenses or decrease our income by, among other things, making it harder for us to foreclose on mortgages.  Further, the overall effects of these and other legislative and regulatory efforts on the financial markets remain uncertain, and they may not have the intended stabilization results.  These efforts may even have unintended harmful consequences on the U.S. financial system and our business.  Should these or other legislative or regulatory initiatives have unintended effects, our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects could be materially and adversely affected.

 

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In addition, we may need to modify our strategies and business operations in response to these changes.  We may also incur increased capital requirements and constraints or additional costs to satisfy new regulatory requirements.  Given the volatile nature of the current market and the uncertainties underlying efforts to mitigate or reverse disruptions, we may not timely anticipate or manage existing, new or additional risks, contingencies or developments in the current or future environment.  Our failure to do so could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

 

We could experience an unexpected inability to obtain needed liquidity.

 

Liquidity measures the ability to meet current and future cash flow needs as they become due.  The liquidity of a financial institution reflects its ability to meet loan requests, to accommodate possible outflows in deposits, and to take advantage of interest rate market opportunities.  The ability of a financial institution to meet its current financial obligations is a function of its balance sheet structure, its ability to liquidate assets and its access to alternative sources of funds.  We seek to ensure our funding needs are met by maintaining a level of liquidity through asset/liability management as well as through, among other things, our ability to borrow funds from the Federal Home Loan Bank and the Federal Reserve Bank.  As December 31, 2009, our borrowing capacity with the Federal Home Loan Bank was $13,290,000 of which $10,290,000 is available.  Both institution specific events such as deterioration in our credit ratings resulting from a weakened capital position or from lack of earnings and industry-wide events such as a collapse of credit markets may result in a reduction of available funding sources sufficient to cover the liquidity demands.  If we are unable to obtain funds when needed, it could materially adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

Because of our participation in the Treasury Department’s Capital Purchase Program, we are subject to several restrictions including restrictions on compensation paid to our executives.

 

Pursuant to the terms of the CPP Purchase Agreement between us and the Treasury, we adopted certain standards for executive compensation and corporate governance for the period during which the Treasury holds the equity issued pursuant to the CPP Purchase Agreement, including the common stock which may be issued pursuant to the CPP Warrant.  These standards generally apply to our Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer and the three next most highly compensated senior executive officers.  The standards include (1) ensuring that incentive compensation for senior executives does not encourage unnecessary and excessive risks that threaten the value of the financial institution; (2) required clawback of any bonus or incentive compensation paid to a senior executive based on statements of earnings, gains or other criteria that are later proven to be materially inaccurate; (3) prohibition on making golden parachute payments to senior executives; and (4) agreement not to deduct for tax purposes executive compensation in excess of $500,000 for each senior executive.  In particular, the change to the deductibility limit on executive compensation will likely increase the overall cost of our compensation programs in future periods and may make it more difficult to attract suitable candidates to serve as executive officers.

 

Legislation or regulatory changes could cause us to seek to repurchase the preferred stock that we sold to the U.S. Treasury pursuant to the Capital Purchase Program.

 

Legislation that has been adopted after we closed on our sale of Series A and Series B Preferred Stock to the Treasury for approximately $3.3 million pursuant to the CPP on January 9, 2009, or any legislation or regulations that may be implemented in the future, may have a material impact on the terms of our CPP transaction with the Treasury.  If we determine that any such legislation or any regulations, in whole or in part, alter the terms of our CPP transaction with the Treasury in ways that we believe are adverse to our ability to effectively manage our business, then it is possible that we may seek to unwind, in whole or in part, the CPP transaction by repurchasing some or all of the preferred stock that we sold to the Treasury pursuant to the CPP.  If we were to repurchase all or a portion of such preferred stock, then our capital levels could be materially reduced.

 

The securities purchase agreement between us and the Treasury limits our ability to pay dividends on and repurchase our common stock.

 

The securities purchase agreement between us and the Treasury provides that prior to January 9, 2012, unless we have redeemed the Series A Preferred Stock and Series B Preferred Stock or the Treasury has transferred the Series A Preferred Stock or Series B Preferred Stock to a third party, the consent of the Treasury will be required for us to declare or pay any dividend or make any distribution on our common stock.  The purchase agreement further provides that prior to January 9, 2019, unless we have redeemed the Series A Preferred Stock and Series B Preferred Stock or the Treasury has transferred the Series A Preferred Stock or Series B Preferred Stock to a third

 

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party, the consent of the Treasury will be required for us to redeem, purchase or acquire any shares of our common stock or other equity or capital securities, other than in connection with benefit plans consistent with past practice and certain other circumstances specified in the purchase agreement.  These restrictions could have a negative effect on the value of our common stock.

 

Higher FDIC Deposit Insurance premiums and assessments that we are required to pay could have an adverse effect on our earnings and our ability to pay our liabilities as they come due.

 

As a member institution of the FDIC, we are required to pay quarterly deposit insurance premium assessments to the FDIC.  Due to the large number of recent bank failures, and the FDIC’s new Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program, the FDIC adopted a revised risk-based deposit insurance assessment schedule in February 2009, which raised deposit insurance premiums.  The FDIC also implemented a five basis point special assessment of each insured depository institution’s assets minus Tier 1 capital as of June 30, 2009, which special assessment amount was capped at 10 basis points times the institution’s assessment base for the second quarter of 2009.  In addition, the FDIC recently announced a rule that requires financial institutions like us to prepay their estimated quarterly risk-based assessments for the fourth quarter of 2009 and for all of 2010 through and including 2012 to re-capitalize the Deposit Insurance Fund.  The FDIC may exercise its discretion as supervisor and insurer to exempt an institution from the prepayment requirement if the FDIC determines that the prepayment would adversely affect the safety and soundness of the institution.  We did request exemption from the prepayment requirement and were granted such exemption from the FDIC.  During 2009, we paid $290,845 in deposit insurance, which included regular premiums and the special assessment.  The rule also provides for increasing the FDIC-assessment rates by three basis points effective January 1, 2011.  If FDIC deposit insurance premiums and assessments continue to increase, these higher payments could adversely affect our financial condition.

 

Our small to medium-sized business target markets may have fewer financial resources to weather a downturn in the economy.

 

We target the banking and financial services needs of small and medium-sized business.  These businesses generally have fewer financial resources in terms of capital borrowing capacity than larger entities.  If general economic conditions continue to negatively impact these businesses in the markets in which we operate, our business, financial condition and results of operations may be adversely affected.

 

We depend on the accuracy and completeness of information about clients and counterparties and our financial condition could be adversely affected if we rely on misleading information.

 

In deciding whether to extend credit or to enter into other transactions with clients and counterparties, we may rely on information furnished to us by or on behalf of clients and counterparties, including financial statements and other financial information.  We also may rely on representations of clients and counterparties as to the accuracy and completeness of that information and, with respect to financial statements, on reports of independent auditors.  For example, in deciding whether to extend credit to clients, we may assume that a customer’s audited financial statements conform with GAAP and present fairly, in all material respects, the financial condition, results of operations and cash flows of the customer.  Our financial condition and results of operations could be negatively affected to the extent we rely on financial statements that do not comply with GAAP or are materially misleading.

 

We are dependent on key individuals and the loss of one or more of these key individuals could curtail our growth and adversely affect our prospects.

 

Charlie T. Lovering, our chief executive officer, has extensive and long-standing ties within our primary service areas and provides us with an important medium through which to market our products and services.  If we lose the services of Mr. Lovering, he could be difficult to replace and our business and development could be materially and adversely affected.

 

Our success also depends, in part, on our continued ability to attract and retain experienced loan originators, as well as other management personnel.  Competition for personnel is intense, and we may not be successful in attracting or retaining qualified personnel.  Our failure to compete for these personnel, or the loss of the services of several of such key personnel, could adversely affect our growth strategy and seriously harm our business, results of operations, and financial condition.

 

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The costs of being an SEC registered company are proportionately higher for smaller companies like us because of the requirements imposed by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

 

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the related rules and regulations promulgated by the SEC have increased the scope, complexity and cost of corporate governance, reporting and disclosure practices.  These regulations are applicable to our company.  We have experienced, and expect to continue to experience, increasing compliance costs, including costs related to internal controls, as a result of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.  These necessary costs are proportionately higher for a company of our size and will affect our profitability more than that of some of our larger competitors.

 

Our continued operations and future growth may require us to raise additional capital in the future, but that capital may not be available when it is needed.

 

We are required by regulatory authorities to maintain adequate levels of capital to support our operations.  To support our continued operations, including any additional growth, we may need to raise additional capital.  In addition, we intend to redeem the Series A Preferred Stock that we issued to the Treasury under the CPP before the dividends on the Series A Preferred Stock increase from 5% per annum to 9% per annum in 2014, as we may need to raise additional capital to do so.  Our ability to raise additional capital will depend in part on conditions in the capital markets at that time, which are outside our control, and our financial performance.  Accordingly, we may be unable to raise additional capital, if and when needed, on terms acceptable to us, or at all.  If we cannot raise additional capital when needed, our ability to continue our current operations or further expand our operations through internal growth and acquisitions could be materially impaired.  In addition, if we decide to raise additional equity capital, your interest could be diluted.

 

We face strong competition for clients, which could prevent us from obtaining clients and may cause us to pay higher interest rates to attract deposits.

 

The banking business is highly competitive, and we experience competition in our market from many other financial institutions.  We compete with commercial banks, credit unions, savings and loan associations, mortgage banking firms, consumer finance companies, securities brokerage firms, insurance companies, money market funds, and other mutual funds, as well as other super-regional, national, and international financial institutions that operate offices in our primary market areas and elsewhere.  We compete with these institutions both in attracting deposits and in making loans.  In addition, we have to attract our client base from other existing financial institutions and from new residents.  Many of our competitors are well-established, larger financial institutions.  These institutions offer some services, such as extensive and established branch networks, that we do not provide.  There are also a number of other relatively new community banks in our market that share our general marketing focus on small- to medium-sized businesses and individuals.  There is a risk that we will not be able to compete successfully with other financial institutions in our market, and that we may have to pay higher interest rates to attract deposits, resulting in reduced profitability.  In addition, competitors that are not depository institutions are generally not subject to the extensive regulations that apply to us.

 

We will face risks with respect to future expansion and acquisitions or mergers.

 

Although we do not have any current plans to do so, we may seek to acquire other financial institutions or parts of those institutions.  We may also expand into new markets or lines of business or offer new products or services.  These activities would involve a number of risks, including:

 

·                  the potential inaccuracy of the estimates and judgments used to evaluate credit, operations, management, and market risks with respect to a target institution;

 

·                  the time and costs of evaluating new markets, hiring or retaining experienced local management, and opening new offices and the time lags between these activities and the generation of sufficient assets and deposits to support the costs of the expansion;

 

·                  the incurrence and possible impairment of goodwill associated with an acquisition and possible adverse effects on our results of operations; and

 

·                  the risk of loss of key employees and customers.

 

25



 

We have never acquired another institution before, so we lack experience in handling any of these risks.  There is the risk that any expansion effort will not be successful.

 

We are exposed to the possibility of technology failure and a disruption in our operations may adversely affect our business.

 

We rely on our computer systems and the technology of outside service providers.  Our daily operations depend on the operational effectiveness of their technology.  We rely on our systems to accurately track and record our assets and liabilities.  If our computer systems or outside technology sources become unreliable, fail, or experience a breach of security, our ability to maintain accurate financial records may be impaired, which could materially affect our business operations and financial condition.  In addition, a disruption in our operations resulting from failure of transportation and telecommunication systems, loss of power, interruption of other utilities, natural disaster, fire, global climate changes, computer hacking or viruses, failure of technology, terrorist activity or the domestic and foreign response to such activity or other events outside of our control could have an adverse impact on the financial services industry as a whole and/or on our business. Our business recovery plan may not be adequate and may not prevent significant interruptions of our operations or substantial losses.

 

Item 1B.  Unresolved Staff Comments.

 

Not applicable.

 

26



 

Item 2.   Properties.

 

Our Sunset office, which opened in January, 2008 is located at the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Kim Street approximately one mile east of the Lexington Medical Center.  Our address is 2023 Sunset Boulevard, West Columbia, South Carolina 29169.  The building is approximately 4,100 square feet on a site that is approximately 1.5 acres in size and is a full service banking facility with 3 drive-thru lanes and a drive-thru ATM.  The Sunset office is subject to a 15 year lease, with the option to extend the lease for two consecutive renewal terms of five years each.

 

We also occupy another branch and administration office located at 1201 Knox Abbot Drive, Cayce, South Carolina.  This building is approximately 7,500 square feet in administration area and approximately 2,100 square feet branch office with a drive in facility.  In December 2008, we entered into a sale-lease back agreement for a portion of this property.  The lease is for a period of 15 years, with the option to extend the lease for three consecutive renewal terms of five years each.  This property is approximately 5,674 square feet which the Bank leases to other tenants.

 

Item 3.   Legal Proceedings.

 

In the ordinary course of operations, we may be a party to various legal proceedings from time to time.  We are not aware of any pending or threatened proceeding against us which we expect to have a material effect on our business, results of operations, or financial condition.

 

Item 4.   (Removed and Reserved).

 

No matter was submitted to a vote of security holders during the fourth quarter of the fiscal year covered by this report.

 

PART II

 

Item 5.   Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities.

 

Since February 2, 2009, our common stock has been quoted on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol “CNRB.”  Quotations on the OTC Bulletin Board reflect inter-dealer prices, without retail mark-up, mark-down, or commissions, and may not represent actual transactions.  Transactions of our common stock did not begin to occur on the OTC Bulletin Board until February 4, 2009.

 

The following is a summary of the high and low bid prices for our common stock reported by the OTC Bulletin Board for the periods indicated:

 

2009

 

High

 

Low

 

First Quarter

 

$

10.00

 

$

1.00

 

Second Quarter

 

10.00

 

3.50

 

Third Quarter

 

5.00

 

3.50

 

Fourth Quarter

 

6.75

 

2.05

 

 

As of March 25, 2010, there were 1,764,439 shares of common stock outstanding held by approximately 1,843 shareholders of record.  All of our currently issued and outstanding common stock was issued in our initial public offering which was completed on October 16, 2006.

 

We have not declared or paid any cash dividends on our common stock since our inception.  For the foreseeable future we do not intend to declare cash dividends.  We intend to retain earnings to grow our business and strengthen our capital base.  Our ability to pay dividends depends on the ability of our subsidiary, Congaree State Bank, to pay dividends to us.  As a South Carolina state bank, our Bank may only pay dividends out of its net profits, after deducting expenses, including losses and bad debts.  In addition, our Bank is prohibited from declaring a dividend on its shares of common stock until its surplus equals its stated capital.

 

27



 

In addition, on January 9, 2009, as part of the Capital Purchase Program established by the Treasury under the EESA, we entered into the CPP Purchase Agreement with Treasury, pursuant to which we issued and sold to Treasury (i) 3,285 shares of our Series A Preferred Stock, and (ii) a ten-year warrant to purchase 164 shares of our Series B Preferred Stock, for an aggregate purchase price of $3,285,000 in cash.  Pursuant to the CPP Purchase Agreement, prior to January 9, 2012, unless we have redeemed the Series A Preferred Stock and the Series B Preferred Stock or the Treasury has transferred the Series A Preferred Stock and the Series B Preferred Stock to a third party, the consent of the Treasury will be required for us to declare or pay any dividend or make any distribution on our common stock.

 

The following table sets forth equity compensation plan information at December 31, 2009.

 

Equity Compensation Plan Information

 

Plan Category

 

Number of securities
to be issued
upon exercise of
outstanding options,
warrants and rights (a)

 

Weighted-average
exercise price of
outstanding options,
warrants and rights
(b)

 

Number of securities
remaining available for
future issuance under
equity compensation
plans (c)
(excluding securities
reflected in column(a))

 

Equity compensation plans approved by security holders (1)

 

138,237

 

$

10.00

 

126,063

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Equity compensation plans not approved by security holders (2) 

 

120,000

 

$

10.00

 

 

Total

 

258,237

 

$

10.00

 

126,063

 

 


(1)                                    At our annual meeting in 2007, we adopted the Congaree Bancshares, Inc. 2007 Stock Incentive Plan.

 

(2)                                  Each of our organizers received, for no additional consideration, a warrant to purchase one share of common stock for $10.00 per share for each share purchased during our initial public offering up to a maximum of 10,000 warrants.  The warrants are represented by separate warrant agreements.  The warrants will vest over a three year period beginning October 16, 2007, and they will be exercisable in whole or in part during the 10 year period ending October 16, 2016.  If the South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions or the FDIC issues a capital directive or other order requiring the Bank to obtain additional capital, the warrants will be forfeited, if not immediately exercised.

 

Item 6.  Selected Financial Data.

 

Not applicable.

 

28



 

Item 7.  Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.

 

General

 

Our Bank opened for business on October 16, 2006.  All activities of the Company prior to that date relate to the organization of the Bank.  The following discussion describes our results of operations for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008 and also analyzes our financial condition as of December 31, 2009. The following discussion and analysis also identifies significant factors that have affected our financial position and operating results during the periods included in the accompanying financial statements. We encourage you to read this discussion and analysis in conjunction with our financial statements and the other statistical information included in this report.

 

Like most community banks, we derive the majority of our income from interest we receive on our loans and investments.  Our primary source of funds for making these loans and investments is our deposits, on which we pay interest.  Consequently, one of the key measures of our success is our amount of net interest income, or the difference between the income on our interest-earning assets, such as loans and investments, and the expense on our interest-bearing liabilities, such as deposits, also known as net interest margin.  Another key measure is the spread between the yield we earn on these interest-earning assets and the rate we pay on our interest-bearing liabilities, which is referred to as net interest spread.

 

We have included a number of tables to assist in our description of these measures.  For example, the “Average Balances, Income and Expenses, and Rates” tables show for the periods indicated the average balance for each category of our assets and liabilities, as well as the average yield we earned or the average rate we paid with respect to each category.  A review of these tables show that our loans historically have provided higher interest yields than our other types of interest-earning assets, which is why we have invested a substantial percentage of our earning assets into our loan portfolio.  Similarly, the “Rate/Volume Analysis” table helps demonstrate the impact of changing interest rates and changing volume of assets and liabilities during the periods shown.  We also track the sensitivity of our various categories of assets and liabilities to changes in interest rates, and we have included “Interest Sensitivity Analysis” tables to help explain this.  Finally, we have included a number of tables that provide detail about our investment securities, our loans, our deposits and other borrowings.

 

There are risks inherent in all loans, so we maintain an allowance for loan losses to absorb probable losses on existing loans that may become uncollectible.  We establish and maintain this allowance by charging a provision for loan losses against our operating earnings.  In the “Loans” and “Provision and Allowance for Loan Losses” sections, we have included a detailed discussion of this process, as well as several tables describing our allowance for loan losses.

 

In addition to earning interest on our loans and investments, we earn income through fees and other expenses we charge to our clients.  We describe the various components of this non-interest income, as well as our non-interest expense, in the following discussion.

 

Current Economic Environment

 

Markets in the United States and elsewhere have experienced extreme volatility and disruption for more than 18 months.  These circumstances have exerted significant downward pressure on prices of equity securities and virtually all other asset classes, and have resulted in substantially increased market volatility, severely constrained credit and capital markets, particularly for financial institutions, and an overall loss of investor confidence.  Loan portfolio performances have deteriorated at many institutions resulting from, among other factors, a weak economy and a decline in the value of the collateral supporting their loans.  Dramatic slowdowns in the housing industry, due in part to falling home prices and increasing foreclosures and unemployment, have created strains on financial institutions.  Many borrowers are now unable to repay their loans, and the collateral securing these loans has, in some cases, declined below the loan balance.  As discussed in the section entitled “Supervision and Regulation” under the heading “Recent Legislative and Regulatory Initiatives to Address Financial and Economic Crisis, the United States government has taken unprecedented actions in response to the challenges facing the financial services sector.

 

The Effect of the Current Economic Environment on our Bank

 

Like many financial institutions across the United States and in South Carolina, our operations have been

 

29



 

adversely affected by the current economic crisis.  Beginning in 2008 and continuing through 2009, we recognized that construction, acquisition, and development real estate projects were slowing, guarantors were becoming financially stressed, and increasing credit losses were surfacing.  During 2009, delinquencies over 90 days increased resulting in an increase in non-accrual loans indicating significant credit quality deterioration and probable losses.  The deterioration was not significant in loans secured by home equity lines of credit to owner-occupied one to four family real estate and commercial and industrial loans.  These loans are primarily to small businesses that are less able to weather the recession.  This deterioration manifested itself in our borrowers in the following ways: (i) deterioration in personal income, which led to an inability for individuals to pay their mortgages; (ii) deterioration in sales revenues to small businesses, which led to financial stress to the business and/or guarantor(s); and (iii) illiquid personal balance sheets and increased leverage due to a lack of cash flow, which eliminated second and/or third sources of repayment.

 

As of December 31, 2009, approximately 86.8% of our loans had real estate as a primary or secondary component of collateral.  Included in our loans secured by real estate, we have approximately $16,454,132 million of construction and development loans as of December 31, 2009, most of which are on properties located within the Columbia MSA and consist primarily of loans to individuals or closely held real estate holding companies where the borrower was holding property for current and/or future personal use.  Additionally, $3,311,287 of all construction and development loans are single family residence construction loans to the individual who intends on using the constructed house as their primary residence.  Over the last eight quarters the Bank has yet to experience any loss from its construction and development portfolio and feels that the loans we have made to date do not carry the same risks associated with a typical bank’s construction and development portfolio.

 

The decrease in the provision for loan losses for 2009 was attributed to a combination of economic factors.  The loans that were qualified as impaired during 2009 had smaller balances and required smaller reserves than in 2008.  In addition, although the overall portfolio grew approximately 94.5% from 2007 to 2008, it decreased approximately 1.3% from 2008 to 2009.  The lack of portfolio growth was primarily due to the economic downturn.  We believe that while the lending policy is strong, most losses for the year were due to Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOCs) and Commercial and Industrial (C&I) loans, as opposed to CRE or C&D loans.  HELOC and C&I borrowers consisted of loans to individuals and small businesses that had prospered during the better economic conditions but suffered recently during the recession.  This is evidenced by the 2009 annual charge off rate of 1.62% for HELOCs and 3.20% for C&I loans where CRE and C&D loans have annual charge off rates of 0.04% and 0.00%, respectively.

 

The result of the above was a significant increase in the level of our non-performing assets during 2009.  As of December 31, 2009, our non-performing assets equaled $2.7 million, or 1.94% of assets, as compared to $294,596, or 0.21% of assets, as of December 31, 2008.  For the year ended December 31, 2009, we recorded a provision for loan losses of $717,937 and net loan charge-offs of $907,840, or 0.83% of average loans, as compared to a $1,391,090 provision for loan losses and net loan charge-offs of $254,850, or 0.29% of average loans, for the year ended December 31, 2008.  In addition, our net interest margin decreased to 2.97% for the year ended December 31, 2009 from 3.09% for the year ended December 31, 2008.

 

Based on discussions with the FDIC following our most recent safety and soundness examination in the fourth quarter of 2009, we expect to receive a consent order from the FDIC at some point in 2010 that could require the Bank to take certain actions to address concerns raised in the examination.  These actions may include addressing asset quality, capital adequacy, earnings, management effectiveness, liquidity, and sensitivity to market risk.

 

Critical Accounting Policies

 

We have adopted various accounting policies that govern the application of accounting principles generally accepted in the United States and with general practices within the banking industry in the preparation of our financial statements. Our significant accounting policies are described in footnote 1 to our audited consolidated financial statements as of December 31, 2009, included herein.  Management has discussed these critical accounting policies with the audit committee.

 

Certain accounting policies involve significant judgments and assumptions by us that have a material impact on the carrying value of certain assets and liabilities.  We consider these accounting policies to be critical accounting policies.  The judgment and assumptions we use are based on historical experience and other factors, which we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances.  Because of the nature of the judgment and assumptions

 

30



 

we make, actual results could differ from these judgments and estimates that could have a material impact on the carrying values of our assets and liabilities and our results of operations.

 

Allowance for Loan Losses

 

We believe the allowance for loan losses is the critical accounting policy that requires the most significant judgment and estimates used in preparation of our consolidated financial statements.  Some of the more critical judgments supporting the amount of our allowance for loan losses include judgments about the creditworthiness of borrowers, the estimated value of the underlying collateral, the assumptions about cash flow, determination of loss factors for estimating credit losses, the impact of current events, and conditions, and other factors impacting the level of probable inherent losses.

 

Under different conditions or using different assumptions, the actual amount of credit losses incurred by us may be different from management’s estimates provided in our consolidated financial statements.  Refer to the portion of this discussion that addresses our allowance for loan losses for a more complete discussion of our processes and methodology for determining our allowance for loan losses.

 

Income Taxes

 

We use assumptions and estimates in determining income taxes payable or refundable for the current year, deferred income tax liabilities and assets for events recognized differently in our financial statements and income tax returns, and income tax expense.  Determining these amounts requires analysis of certain transactions and interpretation of tax laws and regulations.  Management exercises judgment in evaluating the amount and timing of recognition of resulting tax liabilities and assets.  These judgments and estimates are reevaluated on a continual basis as regulatory and business factors change.  No assurance can be given that either the tax returns submitted by us or the income tax reported on the financial statements will not be adjusted by either adverse rulings by the United States Tax Court, changes in the tax code, or assessments made by the Internal Revenue Service.  We are subject to potential adverse adjustments, including, but not limited to, an increase in the statutory federal or state income tax rates, the permanent nondeductibility of amounts currently considered deductible either now or in future periods, and the dependency on the generation of future taxable income, including capital gains, in order to ultimately realize deferred income tax assets.

 

Results of Operations

 

General

 

Our net loss was $1,142,922 and $3,302,939 for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively. Net loss before income tax benefit was $1,142,922 for the year ended December 31, 2009, a decrease of $2,160,017, or 65.4%, compared to $3,302,939 for the year ended December 31, 2008.  The decrease in net loss before income tax benefit resulted from a $745,725 decrease in noninterest expense and increases of $613,144 in net interest income and $127,995 in noninterest income.  Noninterest income increased from $208,307 for the year ended December 31, 2008, to $336,302 for the year ended December 31, 2009.  We also recorded a provision for loan losses of $717,937 and $1,391,090 for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively.

 

Net Interest Income

 

Our primary source of revenue is net interest income.  Net interest income is the difference between income earned on interest-bearing assets and interest paid on deposits and borrowings used to support such assets. The level of net interest income is determined by the balances of interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities and corresponding interest rates earned and paid on those assets and liabilities, respectively.  In addition to the volume of and corresponding interest rates associated with these interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities, net interest income is affected by the timing of the repricing of these interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities.

 

Net interest income was $3,786,085 for the year ended December 31, 2009, an increase of $613,144 or 19.3%, over net interest income of $3,172,941 for the year ended December 31, 2008.  Interest income of $6,654,381 for the year ended December 31, 2009, included $5,984,716 on loans, $648,748 on investment securities and $20,917 on federal funds sold.  Loan interest and related fees improved $488,351, or 8.9%, over 2008, due to continued growth in the loan portfolio volume. Total interest expense of $2,868,296 for the year ended December 

 

31



 

31, 2009, included $2,782,413 related to deposit accounts and $85,883 on federal funds purchased and Federal Home Loan Bank borrowings.  Interest expense on deposits decreased $204,379, or 6.8%, due to the decrease in deposit rates during 2009.

 

The following table sets forth information related to our average balance sheet, average yields on assets, and average costs of liabilities. We derived these yields by dividing income or expense by the average balance of the corresponding assets or liabilities. We derived average balances from the daily balances throughout the periods indicated. The net amount of capitalized loan fees is amortized into interest income over the life of the loans.

 

Average Balances, Income and Expenses, and Yields and Rates

For the Years Ended December 31,

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

Average
balance

 

Income/
expense

 

Yield/
rate

 

Average
balance

 

Income/
expense

 

Yield/
rate

 

Interest-earning assets:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Federal funds sold and Certificates of deposit with other banks

 

$

5,561,344

 

$

20,917

 

0.38

%

$

1,085,080

 

$

37,912

 

3.49

%

Investment securities and FHLB stock

 

13,035,212

 

648,748

 

4.98

 

14,137,396

 

745,149

 

5.27

 

Loans (1)

 

108,869,938

 

5,984,716

 

5.50

 

87,390,666

 

5,496,365

 

6.29

 

Total interest-earning assets

 

127,466,494

 

6,654,381

 

5.22

 

102,613,142

 

6,279,426

 

6.12

 

Non-earning assets

 

6,750,078

 

 

 

 

 

4,869,322

 

 

 

 

 

Total assets

 

$

134,216,572

 

 

 

 

 

$

107,482,464

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest-bearing liabilities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest checking

 

$

4,395,267

 

12,939

 

0.29

%

$

4,309,880

 

32,922

 

0.76

%

Savings and money market

 

29,338,372

 

594,589

 

2.03

 

23,914,113

 

685,817

 

2.87

 

Time deposits

 

73,340,128

 

2,174,885

 

2.97

 

55,965,894

 

2,268,053

 

4.05

 

FHLB advances

 

3,000,000

 

78,784

 

2.63

 

2,508,621

 

67,345

 

2.68

 

Federal funds purchased and repurchase agreement

 

1,171,462

 

7,099

 

0.61

 

2,009,050

 

52,348

 

2.61

 

Total interest-bearing liabilities

 

111,245,229

 

2,868,296

 

2.58

 

88,707,558

 

3,106,485

 

3.50

 

Non-interest bearing liabilities

 

10,809,566

 

 

 

 

 

8,473,870

 

 

 

 

 

Shareholders’ equity

 

12,161,777

 

 

 

 

 

10,301,037

 

 

 

 

 

Total liabilities and shareholders’ equity

 

$

134,216,572

 

 

 

 

 

$

107,482,464

 

 

 

 

 

Net interest spread

 

 

 

 

 

2.64

%

 

 

 

 

2.62

%

Net interest income/margin

 

 

 

$

3,786,085

 

2.97

%

 

 

$

3,172,941

 

3.09

%

 


(1)  Loan fees, which are immaterial, are included in interest income.  There were $2,020,974 in nonaccrual loans for 2009 and $294,596 nonaccrual loans in 2008. Nonaccrual loans are included in the average balances, and income on nonaccrual loans is included on the cash basis for yield computation purposes.

 

Our consolidated net interest margin for the year ended December 31, 2009 was 2.97%, a decrease of 12 basis points from the net interest margin of 3.09% for the year ended December 31, 2008.  The net interest margin is calculated by dividing net interest income by year-to-date average earning assets.  This decrease can be attributed to the costs of our funding sources.  We relied on a higher volume of money market deposits to fund the growth of our loan portfolio in 2009.  These deposits are priced higher than core deposits.  Earning assets averaged $127,466,494 for the year ended December 31, 2009, increasing from $102,613,142 for the year ended December 31, 2008. Our net interest spread was 2.64% for the year ended December 31, 2009. The net interest spread is the difference between the yield we earn on our interest-earning assets and the rate we pay on our interest-bearing liabilities. In pricing deposits, we consider our liquidity needs, the direction and levels of interest rates and local market conditions. As such, higher rates than local competitors have been paid initially to attract deposits.

 

32



 

Rate/Volume Analysis

 

Net interest income can be analyzed in terms of the impact of changing interest rates and changing volume. The following table sets forth the effect which the varying levels of interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities and the applicable rates had on changes in net interest income for the comparative periods presented.  Changes attributed to both rate and volume, have been allocated on a pro rata basis.

 

 

 

2009 Compared to 2008

 

 

 

Total
Change

 

Change in
Volume

 

Change in
Rate

 

Interest-earning assets:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Federal funds sold

 

$

(16,995

)

$

(51,718

)

$

(34,723

)

Investment securities and FHLB stock

 

(96,401

)

(133,158

)

(36,757

)

Loans

 

488,351

 

(193,296

)

(681,647

)

Total interest income

 

374,955

 

(378,172

)

(753,127

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest-bearing liabilities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest-bearing deposits

 

(204,379

)

(1,037,502

)

(833,123

)

FHLB advances

 

11,439

 

10,194

 

(1,245

)

Federal funds purchased and Repurchase agreement

 

(45,249

)

(85,430

)

(40,181

)

Total interest expense

 

(238,189

)

(1,112,738

)

(874,549

)

Net interest income

 

$

613,144

 

$

734,566

 

$

(121,422

)

 

Provision for Loan Losses

 

We have established an allowance for loan losses through a provision for loan losses charged as a non-cash expense to our statement of operations. We review our loan portfolio periodically to evaluate our outstanding loans and to measure both the performance of the portfolio and the adequacy of the allowance for loan losses.  Please see the discussion below under “Provision and Allowance for Loan Losses” for a description of the factors we consider in determining the amount of the provision we expense each period to maintain this allowance.

 

Our provision for loan losses for the year ended December 31, 2009 was $717,937, a decrease of $673,153, or 48.4%, over our provision of $1,391,090, for the year ended December 31, 2008.  The allowance as a percentage of gross loans has been decreased from approximately 1.6% to 1.4% as of December 31, 2008 and 2009, respectively, due to management’s evaluation of the adequacy of the reserve for possible loan losses given the size, mix, and quality of the current loan portfolio. Management also relies on our limited history of past-dues and charge-offs, as well as peer data to determine our loan loss allowance.

 

Noninterest Income

 

Noninterest income for the year ended December 31, 2009 was $336,302 compared to $208,307 for the year ended December 31, 2008.  Service charges and other fees on deposit accounts were $138,558 for the year ended December 31, 2009, an improvement of $57,041 over the year ended December 31, 2008, due to an increase in deposit accounts.  For the year ended December 31, 2009, mortgage loan origination fees were $98,177, a decrease of $69,945, or 41.6%, from 2008, due to the decrease in the volume of mortgage loans originated.  We expect this trend to continue and then increase as market conditions improve.  Noninterest income included gains on sales of securities available-for-sale of $114,571 for the year ended December 31, 2009, compared to $71,599 in 2008.  However, these gains were offset by the other than temporary impairment charge on nonmarketable equity securities of $60,352 in 2009, compared to $94,993 in 2008.

 

33



 

Noninterest Expenses

 

The following table sets forth information related to our noninterest expenses for the year ended December 31, 2009 and 2008.

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

Compensation and benefits

 

2,361,927

 

3,137,426

 

Occupancy and equipment

 

811,777

 

801,264

 

Data processing and related costs

 

286,827

 

277,337

 

Marketing, advertising and shareholder communications

 

118,292

 

166,351

 

Legal and audit

 

390,359

 

346,338

 

Other professional fees

 

71,570

 

45,831

 

Supplies and postage

 

65,972

 

122,826

 

Insurance

 

32,406

 

45,964

 

Credit related expenses

 

57,425

 

131,055

 

Courier and armored carrier service

 

7,050

 

19,961

 

Regulatory fees and FDIC insurance

 

290,845

 

96,370

 

Other

 

52,922

 

102,374

 

Total noninterest expense

 

$

4,547,372

 

$

5,293,097

 

 

Noninterest expense was $4,547,372 for the year ended December 31, 2009, compared to $5,293,097 for the year ended December 31, 2008.  The most significant component of noninterest expense is compensation and benefits, which totaled $2,361,927 for the year ended December 31, 2009, compared to $3,137,426 for the year ended December 31, 2008. The decrease is primarily related to staff reductions.  Occupancy and equipment expense of $811,777 in 2009 decreased from $801,264 in 2008.  Data processing and related expense increased from $277,337 in 2008 to $286,827 in 2009, primarily due to an increase in our core processor charges because of the increased volume of new accounts. Legal and audit fees increased from $346,338 in 2008 to $390,359 in 2009, as a result of complying with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and other regulatory changes.  Other professional fees increased from $45,831 in 2008 to $71,570 in 2009.  Supplies and postage related expenses decreased from $122,826 in 2008 to $65,972 in 2009, as a result of the efforts to reduce expenses.  Credit related expenses decreased from $131,055 in 2008 to $57,425 in 2009 as a result slow loan activity during the year.  Regulatory fees and FDIC insurance increased from $96,370 in 2008 to $290,845 in 2009, primarily due to an increase in FDIC insurance assessments and the special assessment. The decrease in other expenses from $102,374 in 2008 to $57,651 was due to management’s efforts to reduce the Bank’s expenses.

 

Income Tax Benefit

 

The Company had no currently taxable income for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008.  The Company has recorded a valuation allowance equal to the net deferred tax asset as the realization of this asset is dependent on the Company’s ability to generate future taxable income during the periods in which temporary differences become deductible.

 

Balance Sheet Review

 

General

 

At December 31, 2009, total assets were $140,036,471 compared to $132,004,104 at December 31, 2008, for an increase of $8,032,367, or 6.1%.  The increase in assets resulted from increases in our investment portfolios and federal funds sold and related increases in our funding sources of deposits.  Interest-earning assets comprised approximately 92.9% and 93.7% of total assets at December 31, 2009 and December 31, 2008.  Gross loans totaled $106,143,726 at December 31, 2009, a decrease of $1,403,930, or 1.3%, from $107,547,656 at December 31, 2008.  Investment securities were $18,439,961 at December 31, 2009, an increase of $4,160,791, or 29.1%, from $14,279,170 at December 31, 2008.  Investment in overnight federal funds increased $1,701,000 to $5,195,000 at December 31, 2009.

 

Deposits totaled $124,596,710 at December 31, 2009, a $6,062,150, or 5.1% ,increase from $118,534,560 at December 31, 2008.  Shareholders’ equity was $12,196,323 and $10,063,099 at December 31, 2009 and December 31, 2008, respectively.

 

34



 

Investments

 

At December 31, 2009, our available for sale investment securities portfolio was $17,965,661 and represented approximately 12.8% of our total assets. Investments increased $4,122,443 from $13,843,218 at December 31, 2008.  Our portfolio consisted of U.S. government sponsored agencies of $10,749,191, mortgage-backed agencies of $6,786,659 and state, county and municipal of $429,811.

 

Contractual maturities and yields on our investment securities available for sale at December 31, 2009 are shown in the following table.  Expected maturities may differ from contractual maturities because issuers may have the right to call or prepay obligations with or without call or prepayment penalties.

 

 

 

Less than

 

One year to

 

Five years

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

one year

 

five years

 

to ten years

 

Over ten years

 

Total

 

 

 

Amount

 

Yield

 

Amount

 

Yield

 

Amount

 

Yield

 

Amount

 

Yield

 

Amount

 

Yield

 

U.S. Government sponsored agencies

 

$

5,222,977

 

2.73

%

$

2,657,491

 

4.47

%

$

2,868,723

 

5.33

%

$

 

 

$

10,749,191

 

3.85

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mortgage-backed agencies

 

 

 

655,637

 

2.37

%

179,530

 

5.40

%

5,951,492

 

4.55

%

6,786,659

 

4.36

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

State, county and municipal

 

 

 

 

 

429,811

 

4.75

%

 

 

429,811

 

4.75

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

 

$

5,222,977

 

2.73

%

$

3,313,128

 

4.05

%

$

3,478,064

 

5.26

%

$

5,951,492

 

4.55

%

$

17,965,661

 

5.28

%

 

The amortized costs and the fair value of our investment securities at December 31, 2009 and 2008 are shown in the following table.

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

Amortized
Cost

 

Fair
Value

 

Amortized
Cost

 

Fair
Value

 

Available for Sale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

U.S. Government sponsored agencies

 

$

10,603,783

 

$

10,749,191

 

$

7,017,105

 

$

7,134,445

 

Mortgage-backed agencies

 

6,662,003

 

6,786,659

 

6,489,572

 

6,708,773

 

State, county and municipal

 

449,666

 

429,811

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

 

$

17,715,452

 

$

17,965,661

 

$

13,503,677

 

$

13,843,218

 

 

We believe, based on industry analyst reports and credit ratings, the deterioration in fair values of individual investment securities available for sale is attributed to changes in market interest rates and not in the credit quality of the issuer and therefore, these losses are not considered other-than-temporary.  We have the ability and intent to hold these securities until such time as the value recovers or the securities mature.

 

Investment securities with market values of approximately $3,783,988 and $6,753,584 at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively, were pledged to secure public deposits and to secure the borrowings from the FHLB, as required by law.

 

Proceeds from sales of available-for-sale securities during 2009 and 2008 were $3,530,088 and $2,244,612, respectively.  Gross gains of $114,571 and $71,599 were recognized on these sales in 2009 and 2008, respectively.

 

We held non-marketable equity securities, which consisted of Federal Home Loan Bank stock of $372,300 and Pacific Coast Bankers Bank stock of $102,000 at December 31, 2009.  These investments are carried at cost, which approximates fair market value.  During 2009, we recognized an other-than-temporary impairment charge on the remaining Silverton Bank stock balance of $60,352.

 

35



 

Management evaluates securities for other-than-temporary impairment at least on a quarterly basis, and more frequently when economic or market concerns warrant such evaluation.  Consideration is given to (1) the length of time and the extent to which the fair value has been less than cost, (2) the financial condition and near-term prospects of the issuer, and (3) the intent and ability of the Company to retain its investment in the issuer for a period of time sufficient to allow for any anticipated recovery in fair value.

 

In analyzing an issuer’s financial condition, management considers whether the securities are issued by the federal government or its agencies, whether downgrades by bond rating agencies have occurred, and industry analysts’ reports.  As management has the ability to hold debt securities until maturity, or for the foreseeable future if classified as available for sale, no declines are deemed to be other than temporary.

 

Loans

 

Since loans typically provide higher interest yields than other interest-earning assets, it is our goal to ensure that the highest percentage of our earning assets is invested in our loan portfolio. Gross loans outstanding at December 31, 2009 were $106,143,726, or 81.6% of interest-earning and 75.8% of total assets, compared to $107,547,656, or 87.1% of interest-earning and 81.5% of total assets at December 31, 2008.  Due to the economic environment, the Bank made selective decisions related to originating loans in 2009.  In addition, as the Bank moved into its third year of operations it experienced the attrition of loans due to refinancing and/or payoffs from borrowers.

 

Loans secured by real estate mortgages comprised approximately 86.8% of loans outstanding at December 31, 2009 and 86.2% at December 31, 2008.  Most of our real estate loans are secured by residential and commercial properties.  We do not generally originate traditional long term residential mortgages, but we do issue traditional second mortgage residential real estate loans and home equity lines of credit.  We obtain a security interest in real estate whenever possible, in addition to any other available collateral.  This collateral is taken to increase the likelihood of the ultimate repayment of the loan. Generally, we limit the loan-to-value ratio on loans we make to 80%.

 

Commercial loans and lines of credit represented approximately 11.1% and 11.0% of our loan portfolio at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively.

 

Our construction and development, and land loan portfolio represented approximately 15.5% and 15.9% at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively.

 

The following table summarizes the composition of our loan portfolio as of December 31, 2009 and 2008:

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

Amount

 

Percentage
of Total

 

Amount

 

Percentage
of Total

 

Real Estate:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Construction and development and land

 

$

16,454,132

 

15.50

%

$

17,150,969

 

15.95

%

Commercial

 

31,926,392

 

30.08

 

29,539,423

 

27.46

 

Residential mortgages

 

16,375,098

 

15.43

 

20,646,023

 

19.20

 

Home equity lines

 

27,425,120

 

25.83

 

25,414,399

 

23.63

 

Total real estate

 

92,180,742

 

86.84

 

92,750,814

 

86.24

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commercial

 

11,738,295

 

11.06

 

11,870,971

 

11.04

 

Consumer

 

2,224,689

 

2.10

 

2,925,871

 

2.72

 

Gross loans

 

106,143,726

 

100

%

107,547,656

 

100

%

Less allowance for loan losses

 

(1,498,937

)

 

 

(1,688,840

)

 

 

Total loans, net

 

$

104,644,789

 

 

 

$

105,858,816

 

 

 

 

36



 

Maturities and Sensitivity of Loans to Changes in Interest Rates

 

The information in the following table is based on the contractual maturities of individual loans, including loans which may be subject to renewal at their contractual maturity.  Renewal of such loans is subject to review and credit approval, as well as modification of terms upon maturity.  Actual repayments of loans may differ from the maturities reflected below because borrowers have the right to prepay obligations with or without prepayment penalties.

 

The following table summarizes the loan maturity distribution by composition and interest rate types at December 31, 2009.

 

 

 

 

 

After one

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One year

 

but within

 

After five

 

 

 

 

 

or less

 

five years

 

years

 

Total

 

Real estate- mortgage

 

$

12,025,169

 

$

44,917,100

 

$

31,540,975

 

$

88,483,244

 

Real estate- construction

 

2,449,939

 

1,247,559

 

 

3,697,498

 

Total real estate

 

14,475,108

 

46,164,659

 

31,540,975

 

92,180,742

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commercial

 

5,290,076

 

5,289,388

 

918,138

 

11,497,602

 

Consumer- other

 

839,602

 

1,554,159

 

71,621

 

2,465,382

 

Total gross loans, net of deferred loan fess

 

$

20,604,786

 

$

53,008,206

 

$

32,530,734

 

$

106,143,726

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gross loans maturing after one year with

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fixed interest rates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$

41,625,430

 

Floating interest rates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$

43,913,510

 

Total

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$

85,538,940

 

 

Provision and Allowance for Loan Losses

 

We have established an allowance for loan losses through a provision for loan losses charged to expense on our consolidated statement of operations. The allowance for loan losses was $1,498,937 and $1,688,840 as of December 31, 2009 and December 31, 2008, respectively, and represented 1.4% of outstanding loans at December 31, 2009 and 1.6% of outstanding loans at December 31, 2008. The allowance for loan losses represents an amount which we believe will be adequate to absorb probable losses on existing loans that may become uncollectible. Our judgment as to the adequacy of the allowance for loan losses is based on a number of assumptions about future events, which we believe to be reasonable, but which may or may not prove to be accurate. Our determination of the allowance for loan losses is based on evaluations of the collectability of loans, including consideration of factors such as the balance of impaired loans, the quality, mix, and size of our overall loan portfolio, economic conditions that may affect the borrower’s ability to repay, the amount and quality of collateral securing the loans, our historical loan loss experience, and a review of specific problem loans. We also consider subjective issues such as changes in the lending policies and procedures, changes in the local/national economy, changes in volume or type of credits, changes in volume/severity of problem loans, quality of loan review and board of director oversight, concentrations of credit, and peer group comparisons. We adjust the amount of the allowance periodically based on changing circumstances as a component of the provision for loan losses.

 

We calculate the allowance for loan losses for specific types of loans and evaluate the adequacy on an overall portfolio basis utilizing our credit grading system which we apply to each loan.  We combine our estimates of the reserves needed for each component of the portfolio, including loans analyzed on a pool basis and loans analyzed individually.  The allowance is divided into two portions: (1) an amount for specific allocations on significant individual credits and (2) a general reserve amount.

 

Specific Reserve

 

We analyze individual loans within the portfolio and make allocations to the allowance based on each individual loan’s specific factors and other circumstances that affect the collectability of the credit. Significant individual credits classified as doubtful or substandard/special mention within our credit grading system require both individual analysis and specific allocation.

 

37



 

Loans in the substandard category are characterized by deterioration in quality exhibited by any number of well-defined weaknesses requiring corrective action such as declining or negative earnings trends and declining or inadequate liquidity.  Loans in the doubtful category exhibit the same weaknesses found in the substandard loan; however, the weaknesses are more pronounced.  These loans, however, are not yet rated as loss because certain events may occur which could salvage the debt such as injection of capital, alternative financing, or liquidation of assets.

 

In these situations where a loan is determined to be impaired (primarily because it is probable that all principal and interest due according to the terms of the loan agreement will not be collected as scheduled), the loan is excluded from the general reserve calculations described below and is assigned a specific reserve.  These reserves are based on a thorough analysis of the most probable source of repayment which is usually the liquidation of the underlying collateral, but may also include discounted future cash flows or, in rare cases, the market value of the loan itself.

 

Generally, for larger collateral dependent loans, current market appraisals are ordered to estimate the current fair value of the collateral.  However, in situations where a current market appraisal is not available, management uses the best available information (including recent appraisals for similar properties, communications with qualified real estate professionals, information contained in reputable trade publications and other observable market data) to estimate the current fair value.  The estimated costs to sell the subject property are then deducted from the estimated fair value to arrive at the “net realizable value” of the loan and to determine the specific reserve on each impaired loan reviewed.  The credit risk management group periodically reviews the fair value assigned to each impaired loan and adjusts the specific reserve accordingly.

 

General Reserve

 

We calculate our general reserve based on a percentage allocation for each of the effective categories of unclassified loan types.  We apply our historical trend loss factors to each category and adjust these percentages for qualitative or environmental factors, as discussed below.  The general estimate is then added to the specific allocations made to determine the amount of the total allowance for loan losses.

 

We also maintain a general reserve in accordance with December 2006 regulatory interagency guidance in our assessment of the loan loss allowance.  This general reserve considers qualitative or environmental factors that are likely to cause estimated credit losses including, but not limited to:  changes in delinquent loan trends, trends in risk grades and net charge offs, concentrations of credit, trends in the nature and volume of the loan portfolio, general and local economic trends, collateral valuations, the experience and depth of lending management and staff, lending policies and procedures, the quality of loan review systems, and other external factors.

 

In addition, the current downturn in the real estate market has resulted in an increase in loan delinquencies, defaults and foreclosures, and we believe these trends are likely to continue.  In some cases, this downturn has resulted in a significant impairment to the value of our collateral and our ability to sell the collateral upon foreclosure, and there is a risk that this trend will continue.  The real estate collateral in each case provides an alternate source of repayment in the event of default by the borrower and may deteriorate in value during the time the credit is extended.  If real estate values continue to decline, it is also more likely that we would be required to increase our allowance for loan losses.  Based on present information and an ongoing evaluation, management considers the allowance for loan losses to be adequate to meet presently known and inherent losses in the loan portfolio.  Management’s judgment about the adequacy of the allowance is based upon a number of assumptions about future events which it believes to be reasonable but which may or may not be accurate.  Thus, there can be no assurance that charge-offs in future periods will not exceed the allowance for loan losses or that additional increases in the allowance for loan losses will not be required, especially considering the overall weakness in the commercial real estate market in our market areas.  Management believes estimates of the level of allowance for loan losses required have been appropriate and our expectation is that the primary factors considered in the provision calculation will continue to be consistent with prior trends.

 

The Company identifies impaired loans through its normal internal loan review process.  Loans on the Company’s potential problem loan list are considered potentially impaired loans.  These loans are evaluated in determining whether all outstanding principal and interest are expected to be collected.  Loans are not considered impaired if a minimal payment delay occurs and all amounts due, including accrued interest at the contractual interest rate for the period of delay, are expected to be collected.  During 2009, we identified additional loans to be reviewed individually for impairment driven primarily by the deterioration in the real estate market in South

 

38



 

Carolina.  During this time period, we began to experience increased delinquencies as real estate projects and borrower personal cash reserves became increasingly strained and the underlying projects began to slow significantly.  At the same time, market appraisal assumptions were declining and, therefore, fair values were rapidly revised downward.  These factors contributed to the increase in impaired loans reviewed individually for impairment and the charge-offs related to such loans during 2009.  Management has determined that the Company had $5,015,580 and $421,542 in impaired loans at December 31, 2009 and December 31, 2008, respectively.  At December 31, 2009, most of the impaired loans identified by management are collateral dependent loans therefore the impairment amount is recorded as a charge-off.  Our valuation allowance related to impaired loans totaled $107,822 and $310,804 at December 31, 2009 and December 31, 2008, respectively.

 

We have retained an independent consultant to review our loan files on a test basis to assess the grading of samples of loans.  In addition, various regulatory agencies review our allowance for loan losses through periodic examinations, and they may require us to record additions to the allowance for loan losses based on their judgment about information made available to them at the time of their examination.  Our losses may vary from our estimates, and there is the possibility that charge-offs in future periods will exceed the allowance for loan losses that we have estimated.

 

The following table presents a summary related to our allowance for loan losses for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008:

 

 

 

For the years ended December 31,

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance at the beginning of period

 

$

1,688,840

 

$

552,600

 

Charge-offs:

 

 

 

 

 

Commercial, financial and agricultural

 

401,588

 

53,011

 

Real estate - mortgage

 

539,851

 

201,012

 

Real estate - construction

 

 

 

Consumer

 

 

827

 

Total Charged-off

 

$

941,439

 

$

254,850

-

Recoveries:

 

 

 

 

 

Commercial, financial and agricultural

 

32,599

 

 

Real estate - mortgage

 

1,000

 

 

Consumer

 

 

 

Total Recoveries

 

$

33,599

 

$

-0

-

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net Charge-offs

 

$

907,840

 

$

254,850

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Provision for Loan Loss

 

$

717,937

 

$

1,391,090

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance at end of period

 

$

1,498,937

 

$

1,688,840

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total loans at end of period

 

$

106,143,726

 

$

107,547,656

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Average loans outstanding

 

$

108,869,938

 

$

87,390,666

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a percentage of average loans:

 

 

 

 

 

Net loans charged-off

 

.83

%

.29

%

Provision for loan losses

 

.66

%

1.59

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Allowance for loan losses as a percentage of:

 

 

 

 

 

Year end loans

 

1.41

%

1.57

%

 

39



 

Non-Performing Assets

 

The following table summarizes non-performing assets and the income that would have been reported on non-accrual loans as of December 31, 2009 and 2008:

 

 

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other real estate and repossessions

 

$

501,037

 

$

0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Non-accrual loans

 

$

2,020,974

 

$

294,596

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accruing loans 90 days or more past due

 

$

196,373

 

$

0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total non-performing assets

 

$

2,718,384

 

$

294,596

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a percentage of gross loans:

 

2.56

%

.27

%

 

The Bank charged off loans in the amount of $907,840 for the year ended December 31, 2009, compared to $254,850 charged off in 2008.  Approximately $295,000 of the charge-offs for 2009 related to loans identified as impaired in 2008 and approximately $646,000 of the charge-offs for 2009 related to loans identified as impaired loans during 2009.  At December 31, 2009, there were 13 loans in non-accrual status totaling $2,020,974 compared to 4 loans in nonaccrual status that totaling $294,596 at December 31, 2008.  There was one loan totaling $196,373 that was contractually past due 90 days or more still accruing interest at December 31, 2009 and none at December 31, 2008.  In addition, there were 9 loans restructured or otherwise impaired totaling $2,994,606 not already included in nonaccrual status at December 31, 2009.  There were no loans restructured or otherwise impaired not already included in nonaccrual status at December 31, 2008.  At December 31, 2009 and 2008, impaired loans totaled $5,015,580 and $421,542, respectively.  Management is concerned about the changes in the nonperforming assets but believes that the allowance has been appropriately funded for additional losses on existing loans, based on currently available information.  The Company will continue to monitor nonperforming assets closely and make changes to the allowance for loan losses when necessary.

 

Generally, a loan will be placed on nonaccrual status when it becomes 90 days past due as to principal or interest, or when management believes, after considering economic and business conditions and collection efforts, that the borrower’s financial condition is such that collection of the loan is doubtful.  A payment of interest on a loan that is classified as nonaccrual will be recognized as income when received.  During the year ended December 31, 2009 and 2008, we received approximately $65,716 and $1,302 in interest income in relation to loans on non-accrual status and forgone interest income related to loans on non-accrual status was approximately $23,066 and $2,427, respectively.

 

Management believes that the amount of nonperforming assets could continue to have a negative effect on the Company’s condition if current economic conditions do not improve.  As was seen in the 2009 financial results, the effect would be lower earnings caused by larger contributions to the loan loss provision arising from a larger impairment in the loan portfolio and a higher level of loan charge-offs.  Management believes the Company has credit quality review processes in place to identify problem loans quickly.  Management will work with customers that are having difficulties meeting their loan payments.  The last resort is foreclosure.

 

Potential Problem Loans

 

Potential problem loans consist of loans that are generally performing in accordance with contractual terms but for which we have concerns about the ability of the borrower to continue to comply with repayment terms because of the borrower’s potential operating or financial difficulties.  Management monitors these loans closely and reviews performance on a regular basis.  As of December 31, 2009 and 2008, potential problem loans that were not already categorized as nonaccrual totaled $2,994,606 and $126,946, respectively.  These loans are considered in determining management’s assessment of the adequacy of the allowance for loan losses.

 

40



 

Deposits

 

Our primary source for our loans and investments is our deposits.  Total deposits as of the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008 were $124,596,710 and $118,534,560, respectively.  The following table shows the average balance outstanding and the average rates paid on deposits during 2009 and 2008.

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

Average
Amount

 

Rate

 

Average
Amount

 

Rate

 

Non-interest bearing demand deposits

 

$

10,460,441

 

%

$

8,189,339

 

%

Interest-bearing checking

 

4,395,267

 

0.30

 

4,309,880

 

0.76

 

Money market

 

28,665,265

 

2.06

 

23,309,167

 

2.91

 

Savings

 

673,106

 

0.79

 

561,479

 

0.95

 

Time deposits less than $100,000

 

30,911,199

 

2.90

 

29,151,636

 

4.03

 

Time deposits $100,000 and over

 

42,428,929

 

3.06

 

26,885,298

 

4.05

 

Total

 

$

117,534,207

 

2.60

%

$

92,406,799

 

3.54

%

 

Core deposits, which exclude time deposits of $100,000 or more and brokered certificates of deposit, provide a relatively stable funding source for our loan portfolio and other earning assets.  Our core deposits were $81,529,139 at December 31, 2009, compared to $67,718,445 at December 31, 2008.  Our loan-to-deposit ratio was 85.19% and 90.73% at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  Due to the competitive interest rate environment in our market, we utilized brokered certificates of deposit as a funding source when we were able to procure these certificates at interest rates less than those in the local market.  Brokered certificates of deposit purchased outside our primary market totaled $5,295,000 at December 31, 2009, compared to $12,943,000 at December 31, 2008.  We expect to continue to decrease our reliance on brokered deposits as our core deposits continue to grow.

 

The maturity distribution of our time deposits of $100,000 or more and brokered time deposits at December 31, 2009 was as follows:

 

Three months or less

 

$

11,329,393

 

Over three through six months

 

8,740,399

 

Over six through twelve months

 

14,536,816

 

Over twelve months

 

8,460,963

 

Total

 

$

43,067,571

 

 

Borrowings and lines of credit

 

At December 31, 2009, the Bank had short-term lines of credit with correspondent banks to purchase a maximum of $4,300,000 in unsecured federal funds on a one to fourteen day basis and $3,300,000 in unused federal funds on a one to thirty day basis for general corporate purposes.  The interest rate on borrowings under these lines is the prevailing market rate for federal funds purchased.  These accommodation lines of credit are renewable annually and may be terminated at any time at the correspondent banks’ sole discretion.  At December 31, 2009 and 2008, we had no borrowings outstanding on these lines.

 

We are also a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank.  At December 31, 2009 and 2008, we had $3,000,000 outstanding at an interest rate of 2.615%, with a maturity date of February 25, 2013.  The Bank borrowed the funds to reduce the cost of funds on money used to fund loans.  The Bank has remaining credit availability of $10,290,000 at the Federal Home Loan Bank.

 

41



 

Capital Resources

 

Total shareholders’ equity was $12,196,323 at December 31, 2009, an increase of $2,133,224 from $10,063,099 at December 31, 2008.  The increase is primarily due to the $3,285,000 the Company received under the TARP CPP during 2009.  Capital surplus increased due to stock compensation expense of $222,670 in 2009. Shareholders’ equity was reduced by our net loss of $1,142,922 for the year ended December 31, 2009.  Unrealized loss on investment securities available for sale decreased shareholders’ equity by $56,978 during 2009.

 

The Federal Reserve and bank regulatory agencies require bank holding companies and financial institutions to maintain capital at adequate levels based on a percentage of assets and off-balance sheet exposures, adjusted for risk weights ranging from 0% to 100%.  The Federal Reserve guidelines contain an exemption from the capital requirements for “small bank holding companies”, which in 2006 were amended to cover most bank holding companies with less than $500 million in total assets that do not have a material amount of debt or equity securities outstanding registered with the SEC.  Although our class of common stock is registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act, we believe that because our stock is not listed on any exchange or otherwise actively traded, the FRB will interpret its new guidelines to mean that we qualify as a small bank holding company.  Nevertheless, our Bank remains subject to these capital requirements.  Failure to meet minimum capital requirements can initiate certain mandatory and possibly additional discretionary actions by regulators that, if undertaken, could have a direct material effect on the Bank’s financial statements.  Under capital adequacy guidelines and the regulatory framework for prompt corrective action, the Bank must meet specific capital guidelines that involve quantitative measures of the Bank’s assets, liabilities and certain off-balance sheet items as calculated under regulatory accounting practices.  The Bank’s capital amounts and classifications are also subject to qualitative judgments by the regulators about components, risk weightings, and other factors.

 

Under the capital adequacy guidelines, regulatory capital is classified into two tiers.  These guidelines require an institution to maintain a certain level of Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital to risk-weighted assets.  Tier 1 capital consists of common shareholders’ equity, excluding the unrealized gain or loss on securities available for sale, minus certain intangible assets.  In determining the amount of risk-weighted assets, all assets, including certain off-balance sheet assets, are multiplied by a risk-weight factor of 0% to 100% based on the risks believed to be inherent in the type of asset.  Tier 2 capital consists of Tier 1 capital plus the general reserve for loan losses, subject to certain limitations.  We are also required to maintain capital at a minimum level based on total average assets, which is known as the Tier 1 leverage ratio.

 

At the Bank level, we are subject to various regulatory capital requirements administered by the federal banking agencies.  Under the regulations adopted by the federal regulatory authorities, a bank will be categorized as:

 

·                  Well capitalized if the institution has a total risk-based capital ratio of 10.0% or greater, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of 6.0% or greater, a leverage ratio of 5.0% or greater, and is not subject to any order or written directive by any such regulatory authority to meet and maintain a specific capital level for any capital measure.

·                  Adequately capitalized if the institution has a total risk-based capital ratio of 8.0% or greater, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of 4.0% or greater, a leverage ratio of 4.0% or greater, and is not categorized as well capitalized.

·                  Undercapitalized if the institution has a total risk-based capital ratio that is less than 8.0%, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of less than 4.0%, or a leverage ratio of less than 4.0%.

·                  Significantly undercapitalized if the institution has a total risk-based capital ratio of less than 6.0%, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of less than 3.0%, or a leverage ratio of less than 3.0%.

·                  Critically undercapitalized if the institution’s tangible equity is equal to or less than 2.0% of average quarterly tangible assets.

 

In addition, an institution may be downgraded to, or deemed to be in, a capital category that is lower than indicated by its capital ratios if it is determined to be in an unsafe or unsound condition or if it receives an unsatisfactory examination rating with respect to certain matters.  A bank’s capital category is determined solely for the purpose of applying prompt corrective action regulations, and the capital category may not constitute an accurate representation of a bank’s overall financial condition or prospects for other purposes.

 

42



 

The following table sets forth the Bank’s capital ratios at December 31, 2009 and 2008.  As of December 31, 2009, the Bank was considered “well capitalized.”  As of December 31, 2008, the Bank was considered “adequately capitalized.”

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total risk-based capital

 

$

10,836

 

10.57

%

$

8,878

 

8.37

%

Tier 1 risk-based capital

 

9,542

 

9.30

%

7,548

 

7.12

%

Leverage capital

 

9,542

 

6.99

%

7,548

 

5.95

%

 

Return on Equity and Assets

 

The following table shows the return on average assets (net income (loss) divided by average total assets), return on average equity (net income (loss) divided by average equity), and equity to assets ratio (average equity divided by average total assets) for the years ended December 31, 2009 and 2008.

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

Return on average assets

 

(0.85

)%

(3.07

)%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Return on average equity

 

(9.40

)%

(32.06

)%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Equity to assets ratio

 

9.06

%

9.58

%

 

Effect of Inflation and Changing Prices

 

The effect of relative purchasing power over time due to inflation has not been taken into account in our consolidated financial statements.  Rather, our financial statements have been prepared on an historical cost basis in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.

 

Unlike most industrial companies, our assets and liabilities are primarily monetary in nature.  Therefore, the effect of changes in interest rates will have a more significant impact on our performance than will the effect of changing prices and inflation in general.  In addition, interest rates may generally increase as the rate of inflation increases, although not necessarily in the same magnitude.  We attempt to manage the relationships between interest-sensitive assets and liabilities in order to protect against wide rate fluctuations, including those resulting from inflation.

 

Off-Balance Sheet Risk

 

Through the Bank, we have made contractual commitments to extend credit in the ordinary course of our business activities.  These commitments are legally binding agreements to lend money to our clients at predetermined interest rates for a specified period of time.  We evaluate each client’s creditworthiness on a case-by-case basis.  The amount of collateral obtained, if deemed necessary by us upon extension of credit, is based on our credit evaluation of the borrower.  Collateral varies but may include accounts receivable, inventory, property, plant and equipment, commercial and residential real estate.  We manage the credit risk on these commitments by subjecting them to normal underwriting and risk management processes.  At December 31, 2009, we had issued commitments to extend credit of approximately $13,940,000 through various types of lending arrangements.  There were two standby letters of credit included in the commitments for $125,000.  Fixed rate commitments were $876,867 and variable rate commitments were $13,939,784.  At December 31, 2008, commitments to extend credit amounted to $23,394,000, which included letters of credit of $110,000.

 

Commitments generally have fixed expiration dates or other termination clauses and may require the payment of a fee. A significant portion of the unfunded commitments relate to consumer equity lines of credit and commercial lines of credit.  Based on historical experience, we anticipate that a portion of these lines of credit will not be funded.

 

Except as disclosed in this document, we are not involved in off-balance sheet contractual relationships, unconsolidated related entities that have off-balance sheet arrangements or transactions that could result in liquidity needs or other commitments that significantly impact earnings.

 

43



 

Liquidity

 

Liquidity represents the ability of a company to convert assets into cash or cash equivalents without significant loss, and the ability to raise additional funds by increasing liabilities.  Liquidity management involves monitoring our sources and uses of funds in order to meet our day-to-day cash flow requirements while maximizing profits.  Liquidity management is made more complicated because different balance sheet components are subject to varying degrees of management control.  For example, the timing of maturities of our investment portfolio is fairly predictable and subject to a high degree of control at the time investment decisions are made.  However, net deposit inflows and outflows are far less predictable and are not subject to the same degree of control.

 

At December 31, 2009, our liquid assets, consisting of cash and due from banks, federal funds sold and certificates of deposit with other banks, amounted to $12,451,491, or approximately 8.9% of total assets.  Our investment securities available for sale at December 31, 2009 amounted to $17,965,661, or approximately 12.8% of total assets.  Unpledged investment securities traditionally provide a secondary source of liquidity since they can be converted into cash in a timely manner.  At December 31, 2009, $3,783,988 of our investment securities were pledged to secure public entity deposits and as collateral for advances from the Federal Home Loan Bank (“FHLB”).

 

Our ability to maintain and expand our deposit base and borrowing capabilities serves as our primary source of liquidity.  We plan to meet our future cash needs through the liquidation of temporary investments and the generation of deposits. In addition, we will receive cash upon the maturities and sales of loans and maturities, calls and prepayments on investment securities.  We maintain federal funds purchased lines of credit with correspondent banks totaling $7,600,000.  Availability on these lines of credit was $7,600,000 at December 31, 2009.  We are a member of the FHLB, from which applications for borrowings can be made.  The FHLB requires that investment securities or qualifying mortgage loans be pledged to secure advances from them. We are also required to purchase FHLB stock in a percentage of each advance.  At December 31, 2009 we had borrowed $3,000,000 from FHLB.

 

Market Risk

 

Market risk is the risk of loss from adverse changes in market prices and rates, which principally arise from interest rate risk inherent in our lending, investing, deposit gathering, and borrowing activities.  Other types of market risks, such as foreign currency exchange rate risk and commodity price risk, do not generally arise in the normal course of our business.

 

We actively monitor and manage our interest rate risk exposure principally by measuring our interest sensitivity “gap,” which is the positive or negative dollar difference between assets and liabilities that are subject to interest rate repricing within a given period of time.  Interest rate sensitivity can be managed by repricing assets or liabilities, selling securities available for sale, replacing an asset or liability at maturity, or adjusting the interest rate during the life of an asset or liability.  Managing the amount of assets and liabilities repricing in this same time interval helps to hedge the risk and minimize the impact on net interest income of rising or falling interest rates.  We generally would benefit from increasing market rates of interest when we have an asset-sensitive gap position and generally would benefit from decreasing market rates of interest when we are liability-sensitive.  The Company is cumulatively liability sensitive over the three-month to twelve month period and asset sensitive over all periods greater than one year. The analysis presents only a static view of the timing of maturities and repricing opportunities, without taking into consideration that changes in interest rates do not affect all assets and liabilities equally.  For example, rates paid on a substantial portion of core deposits may change contractually within a relatively short time frame, but those rates are viewed by us as significantly less interest-sensitive than market-based rates such as those paid on noncore deposits.  Net interest income may be affected by other significant factors in a given interest rate environment, including changes in the volume and mix of interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities.

 

Interest Rate Sensitivity

 

Asset-liability management is the process by which we monitor and control the mix and maturities of our assets and liabilities.  The essential purposes of asset-liability management are to ensure adequate liquidity and to maintain an appropriate balance between interest sensitive assets and liabilities in order to minimize potentially adverse impacts on earnings from changes in market interest rates.  Our asset-liability management committee monitors and considers methods of managing exposure to interest rate risk.  The asset-liability management committee is responsible for maintaining the level of interest rate sensitivity of our interest sensitive assets and liabilities within board-approved limits.

 

44



 

The following table sets forth information regarding our rate sensitivity, as of December 31, 2009 at each of the time intervals.  The information in the table may not be indicative of our rate sensitivity position at other points in time.  In addition, the repricing distribution indicated in the table differs from the contractual maturities of certain interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities presented due to consideration of prepayment speeds under various interest rate change scenarios in the application of the interest rate sensitivity methods described above.

 

 

 

 

 

After three

 

After one but

 

 

 

 

 

December 31, 2009

 

Within three
months

 

But within
twelve months

 

within five
years

 

After five
years

 

Total

 

Interest-earning assets:(in thousands)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Certificates of deposits with other

 

$

250

 

$

 

$

 

$

 

$

250

 

Federal funds sold

 

5,195

 

 

 

 

5,195

 

Investment securities

 

1,503

 

6,207

 

7,196

 

3,534

 

18,440

 

Loans

 

63,038

 

9,003

 

31,062

 

3,041

 

106,144

 

Total interest-earning assets

 

$

69,986

 

$

15,210

 

$

38,258

 

$

6,575

 

$

130,029

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest-bearing liabilities:(in thousands)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest-bearing checking

 

$

4,756

 

$

 

$

 

$

 

$

4,756

 

Money market and savings

 

33,707

 

 

 

 

33,707

 

Time deposits

 

17,941

 

44,361

 

12,113

 

 

74,415

 

Federal funds purchased

 

 

 

 

 

 

FHLB Advances

 

 

 

3,000

 

 

 

3,000

 

Total interest-bearing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liabilities

 

$

56,404

 

$

44,361

 

$

15,113

 

$

 

$

115,878

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Period gap

 

$

13,582

 

$

(29,151

)

$

23,145

 

$

6,575

 

14,151

 

Cumulative gap

 

$

(3,662

)

$

(12,642

)

$

(23,769

)

$

34,150

 

(5,923

)

Ratio of cumulative gap to total interest-earning assets

 

(2.82

)%

(9.72

)%

(18.28

)%

26,26

%

4.56

%

 

Item 7A.  Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk.

 

Not applicable.

 

45



 

Item 8.  Financial Statements and Supplementary Data

 

INDEX TO AUDITED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

CONGAREE BANCSHARES, INC. AND SUBSIDIARY

 

 

 

Page No.

 

 

 

Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm

 

47

Consolidated Balance Sheets

 

48

Consolidated Statements of Operations

 

49

Consolidated Statements of Changes in Shareholders’ Equity and Comprehensive Loss

 

50

Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows

 

51

Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

 

52

 

46



 

REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM

 

The Board of Directors

Congaree Bancshares, Inc. and Subsidiary

Cayce, South Carolina

 

We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Congaree Bancshares, Inc. and Subsidiary as of December 31, 2009 and 2008, and the related consolidated statements of operations, changes in shareholders’ equity and comprehensive loss, and cash flows for the years then ended.  These financial statements are the responsibility of the Company’s management.  Our responsibility is to express an opinion on these consolidated financial statements based on our audits.

 

We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States).  Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement.  An audit includes examining, on a test basis, evidence supporting the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements.  An audit also includes assessing the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall financial statement presentation.  We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.

 

In our opinion, the consolidated financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of Congaree Bancshares, Inc. and Subsidiary, as of December 31, 2009 and 2008, and the results of their operations and cash flows for the years then ended, in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.

 

We were not engaged to examine management’s assessment about the effectiveness of Congaree Bancshares, Inc. and its Subsidiary’s internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2009 included in the accompanying Management’s Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting and, accordingly, we do not express an opinion thereon.

 

 

/s/ Elliott Davis, LLC

Elliott Davis, LLC

Columbia, South Carolina

March 29, 2010

 

47



 

CONGAREE BANCSHARES, INC. AND SUBSIDIARY

 

Consolidated Balance Sheets

 

 

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

Assets:

 

 

 

 

 

Cash and cash equivalents:

 

 

 

 

 

Cash and due from banks

 

$

7,006,281

 

$

4,130,319

 

Federal funds sold

 

5,195,000

 

3,494,000

 

Certificates of deposit with other banks

 

250,210

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cash and cash equivalents

 

12,451,491

 

7,624,319

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Securities available-for-sale

 

17,965,661

 

13,843,218

 

Nonmarketable equity securities

 

474,300

 

435,952

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loans receivable

 

106,143,726

 

107,547,656

 

Less allowance for loan losses

 

1,498,937

 

1,688,840

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loans, net

 

104,644,789

 

105,858,816

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Premises, furniture and equipment, net

 

3,410,687

 

3,667,099

 

Accrued interest receivable

 

479,112

 

472,880

 

Other real estate owned

 

501,037

 

 

Other assets

 

109,394

 

101,820

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total assets

 

$

140,036,471

 

$

132,004,104

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liabilities:

 

 

 

 

 

Deposits:

 

 

 

 

 

Noninterest-bearing transaction accounts

 

$

11,719,046

 

$

11,190,632

 

Interest-bearing transaction accounts

 

4,756,331

 

4,358,995

 

Savings and money market

 

33,706,925

 

24,905,711

 

Time deposits $100,000 and over

 

43,067,571

 

45,288,107

 

Other time deposits

 

31,346,837

 

32,791,115

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total deposits

 

124,596,710

 

118,534,560

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Federal Home Loan Bank advances

 

3,000,000

 

3,000,000

 

Accrued interest payable

 

70,436

 

224,434

 

Other liabilities

 

173,002

 

182,011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total liabilities

 

127,840,148

 

121,941,005

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commitments and contingencies (Notes 13, 14 and 19)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shareholders’ equity:

 

 

 

 

 

Preferred stock, $.01 par value, 10,000,000 shares authorized:

 

 

 

 

 

Series A cumulative perpetual preferred stock; 3,285 and 0 shares issued and outstanding at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively

 

3,135,530

 

 

Series B cumulative perpetual preferred stock; 164 and 0 shares issued and outstanding at December 31, 2009 and 2008, respectively

 

178,599

 

 

Common stock, $.01 par value, 10,000,000 shares authorized; 1,764,439 shares issued and outstanding

 

17,644

 

17,644

 

Capital surplus

 

17,658,940

 

17,436,270

 

Retained deficit

 

(8,959,528

)

(7,612,931

)

Accumulated other comprehensive income

 

165,138

 

222,116

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total shareholders’ equity

 

12,196,323

 

10,063,099

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total liabilities and shareholders’ equity

 

$

140,036,471

 

$

132,004,104

 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of the consolidated financial statements.

 

48



 

CONGAREE BANCSHARES, INC. AND SUBSIDIARY

 

Consolidated Statements of Operations

 

 

 

For the years ended
December 31,

 

 

 

2009

 

2008

 

Interest income:

 

 

 

 

 

Loans, including fees

 

$

5,984,716

 

$

5,496,365

 

Securities available-for-sale, taxable

 

648,748

 

745,149

 

Federal funds sold

 

20,917

 

37,912

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

 

6,654,381

 

6,279,426

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interest expense:

 

 

 

 

 

Time deposits $100,000 and over

 

1,228,896

 

1,081,167

 

Other deposits

 

1,553,517

 

1,905,625

 

Other borrowings

 

85,883

 

119,693

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

 

2,868,296

 

3,106,485

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net interest income

 

3,786,085

 

3,172,941

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Provision for loan losses

 

717,937

 

1,391,090

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net interest income after provision for loan losses

 

3,068,148

 

1,781,851

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Noninterest income:

 

 

 

 

 

Service charges on deposit accounts

 

138,558

 

81,517

 

Residential mortgage origination fees

 

98,177

 

168,122

 

Gain on sale of securities available-for-sale

 

114,571

 

71,599

 

Gain (loss) on sale of assets