Santa Barbara, California (October 26, 2023) – American Riviera Bancorp (“Company”) (OTCQX: ARBV), holding company of American Riviera Bank (“Bank”), announced today unaudited net income of $8.3 million ($1.44 per share) for the nine months ended September 30, 2023, compared to $9.5 million ($1.67 per share) earned in the same reporting period in the previous year. Unaudited net income was $2.6 million ($0.46 per share) for the three months ended September 30, 2023, compared to $3.8 million ($0.67 per share) earned in the same reporting period in the previous year.
“We are pleased to report that our core deposits increased $19 million this quarter with the majority of the increase from non-interest bearing checking accounts. Our quarterly net income, earnings per share, non-interest expense, and net interest margin were all relatively stable between the second and third quarters of 2023. Although net income year to date in 2023 compared to 2022 has been impacted by rising deposit costs, our Company was able to increase shareholders’ equity by over 12% in the last year. Our core and digital banking upgrade scheduled for completion in the fourth quarter of 2023 is expected to increase internal efficiencies and enhance client functionality in 2024.”
Jeff DeVine, President and CEO
Third Quarter Highlights
Third Quarter Earnings
For the third quarter of 2023, unaudited net income was $2.6 million, compared to $2.7 million in the second quarter of 2023, and $3.8 million in the third quarter of 2022.
The Bank continues to grow interest and fees on loans sequentially over the last four quarters from $10.1 million in the third quarter of 2022 to $12.1 million in the third quarter of 2023, representing a $2.0 million or 19.4% increase. However, the cost of funding has also increased sequentially from the historically low levels that existed prior to the Federal Reserve’s aggressive rate increase policy. Interest expense on deposits has increased from $0.3 million in the third quarter of 2022 to $2.5 million in the third quarter of 2023.
At the same time, excess cash and due from banks has moved back to a more normalized level as the Federal Reserve has tightened economic conditions, resulting in a decline in interest on cash and due from which was at elevated levels for most of 2022. Interest on cash and due from peaked at $1.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to the current level of $0.2 million in the third quarter of 2023.
Overall interest income in the third quarter of 2023 increased by $1.1 million from the same quarter last year yet was offset by a $2.7 million increase in overall interest expense. Overall interest income for the first nine months of 2023 increased by $6.4 million from the same period last year yet was offset by a $6.7 million increase in overall interest expense. The increase in interest expense is due to higher rates paid on deposits and an increase in borrowed funds.
Loans and Asset Quality
Total loans were $941.1 million at September 30, 2023, a decrease of $4.3 million or 0.5% from the prior quarter-end, and an increase of $54.9 million or 6.2% from September 30, 2022.
The Bank adopted the Current Expected Credit Losses (“CECL”) accounting standard as of January 1, 2023, and recorded a $1.3 million pre-tax reduction to retained earnings upon adoption, including $0.5 million of additional reserve for unfunded loans recorded in other liabilities. The ACL is unchanged at $11.6 million at September 30, 2023 and June 30, 2023, with resulting coverage ratios of 1.24% and 1.23% respectively of total loans, as compared to $10.5 million or 1.18% at September 30, 2022.
Loan charge-offs totaled zero and loan recoveries totaled $3,000 for the third quarter of 2023. As of September 30, 2023, non-accrual loans totaled $2.7 million, down $0.1 million compared to the previous quarter. $2.1 million of the non-accrual total at September 30, 2023, is comprised of one loan which is real estate secured at a 27% loan-to-value based upon a recent appraisal and is paying full principal and interest payments monthly. Credit quality remains strong.
Deposits & Borrowings
Total deposits were $1.1 billion at September 30, 2023, representing an increase of $19.0 million or 1.8% from June 30, 2023, and a decrease of $162.4 million or 12.8% since September 30, 2022. As a result of the current rate environment, the reduction over the last year in deposit balances is primarily due to some clients deciding to reinvest their excess cash in non-FDIC insured, external investment products. The weighted average cost of deposits for the third quarter of 2023 was 0.90%, compared to 0.73% for the previous quarter, and 0.08% for the same quarter last year. Non-interest-bearing demand deposits represent 41.6% of total deposits at September 30, 2023, an increase from 40.8% at the prior quarter-end, and 41.1% at September 30, 2022.
At September 30, 2023, the Bank had $25.0 million of short-term, 30 days or less, FHLB advances and another $10.0 million of long-term FHLB advances outstanding at September 30, 2023. At September 30, 2023, the Company also had $10.0 million drawn on a correspondent bank line of credit at a favorable rate of 3.85% and $18.0 million of subordinated notes outstanding at a favorable rate of 3.75%. The weighted average cost on all borrowings for the quarter was 4.33%, resulting in $0.6 million in interest expense. The $63.0 million of total wholesale funding at September 30, 2023, was a $35.0 million reduction from the level of wholesale funding carried at the end of the first and second quarters of 2023.
The Bank’s liquidity position remained strong with a primary liquidity ratio (cash and cash equivalents, deposits held in other banks and unpledged AFS securities as a percentage of total assets) of 17.2% at September 30, 2023, compared to 19.2% at June 30, 2023.
As of September 30, 2023, the Bank had available and unused, secured borrowing capacity with the FHLB of San Francisco totaling $230.8 million. In addition to availability through the Federal Reserve Bank’s Term Funding Program, the Bank also had $110.0 million of unused fed funds lines of credit with correspondent banks at September 30, 2023. Available contingent funding sources remain robust.
Overall uninsured deposits, excluding public agency deposits that are collateralized, are conservatively estimated to be $410.3 million, or 37.3% of total deposit balances as of September 30, 2023. The actual level of uninsured deposits is lower than the percentage stated above, as our knowledgeable bankers have helped clients obtain more than $250,000 of FDIC insurance with vesting structures such as joint accounts, payable upon death accounts, and revocable trust accounts with multiple beneficiaries. In addition, the Bank can offer up to $50 million of FDIC pass-through insurance to clients via the IntraFi network Insured Cash Sweep (“ICS”) or Certificate of Deposit Account Registry System (“CDARS”) products.
Total shareholders’ equity was $92.4 million at September 30, 2023, a $0.4 million or 0.5% decrease since June 30, 2023, and an increase of $10.2 million or 12.4% over the prior year. The tax adjusted unrealized loss on securities, which is a component of equity (accumulated other comprehensive income or “AOCI”), increased from $23.4 million at the end of the second quarter of 2023 to $26.7 million at the end of the third quarter of 2023. The Bank fully expects to receive all principal when the investments mature.
American Riviera Bancorp (OTCQX: ARBV) is a registered bank holding company headquartered in Santa Barbara, California. American Riviera Bank, the 100% owned subsidiary of American Riviera Bancorp, is a full-service community bank focused on serving the lending and deposit needs of businesses and consumers on the Central Coast of California. The state-chartered bank opened for business on July 18, 2006, with the support of local shareholders. Full-service branches are located in Santa Barbara, Montecito, Goleta, Santa Maria, San Luis Obispo, and Paso Robles. The Bank provides commercial business, commercial real estate, residential mortgage, construction, and Small Business Administration lending services as well as convenient online and mobile technology. For thirteen consecutive years, the Bank has been recognized for strong financial performance by the Findley Reports and has received the highest “Super Premier” rating from Findley every year since 2016. The Bank was rated “Outstanding” by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 2023 for its performance under the Community Reinvestment Act.
Statements concerning future performance, developments or events concerning expectations for growth and market forecasts, and any other guidance on future periods, constitute forward looking statements that are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from stated expectations. Specific factors include, but are not limited to, effects of interest rate changes, ability to control costs and expenses, impact of consolidation in the banking industry, financial policies of the US government, and general economic conditions.Previous: ARB Welcomes Linda Kestler to the Santa Maria Mortgage Team Next: Virtual Bank Conference