Thursday, April 15, 2010

1Q earnings fall for People's United Bank, but dividend jumps

People's United Bank, based in Bridgeport, Conn., Thursday announced net income of $13.6million - or 4 cents per share - for the first quarter of 2010, compared to $24.2 million - or 7 cents per share - for the first quarter of 2009.

The bank's parent company is People's United Financial Inc. and trades under the symbol PBCT on the Nasdaq.

Net interest income totaled $159.6 million.

Included in the results for the quarter are $23.4 million in merger-related and computer system conversion expenses. Senior Vice President of Investor Relations Jared Shaw said computer system upgrades will continue throughout the year but are considered non-operational expenses or non-recurring expenses.

People's completed its acquisition of Financial Federal Corp. - a company that provides financing for equipment purchases - in February. "As anticipated, the transaction was immediately accretive to earnings, though our results will not reflect a full quarter's benefit until the second quarter," said Philip R. Sherringham, president and chief executive officer.

The bank's board of directors voted to increase the annual common stock dividend by 1 penny per share for a quarterly dividend of 15 cents per share payable May 15 to shareholders of record on May 1.

Shaw said People's has capital to deploy and continues to look for additional acquisition opportunities.

Average commercial banking loans increased by $66 million to $8.8 billion since the fourth quarter of 2009, while average residential mortgage loans totaled $2.5 billion, a $103 million decrease during the same period.

People's reported $22 billion in total assets Thursday and its stock closed at $16.65 per share, up 9 cents on the Nasdaq.

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