SAN RAFAEL, CA: Westamerica Bancorporation (Nasdaq: WABC), parent company of Westamerica Bank, generated net income for the fourth quarter 2021 of $21.7 million and diluted earnings per common share (“EPS”) of $0.81. Fourth quarter 2021 results compare to net income of $22.1 million and EPS of $0.82 for the third quarter 2021, which included “make-whole” interest income on corporate bonds redeemed before maturity, which increased EPS $0.02.
“Westamerica’s operating expenses remained well managed in the fourth quarter 2021, delivering fifty-six percent of revenue to pre-tax income. Checking and savings deposits represented ninety-eight percent of the Company’s average deposit base during the fourth quarter 2021, placing limited reliance on higher-costing time deposits. Credit quality remained solid with nonperforming loans of $1.0 million at December 30, 2021,” said Chairman, President and CEO David Payne. “Fourth quarter 2021 results generated an annualized 11.2 percent return on average common equity. Shareholders were paid a $0.42 per common share dividend during the fourth quarter 2021, representing fifty-two percent of diluted earnings per share,” concluded Payne.
Net interest income on a fully-taxable equivalent (FTE) basis was $43.1 million for the fourth quarter 2021, compared to $44.0 million for the third quarter 2021, which included “make-whole” interest income on corporate bonds redeemed prior to maturity of $732 thousand. Interest income on Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) loans was $1.2 million for the fourth quarter 2021, compared to $1.9 million for the third quarter 2021. Average PPP loan balances declined to $69 million for the fourth quarter 2021 from $145 million for the third quarter 2021; at December 31, 2021 PPP loans totaled $46 million. Checking and savings deposits represented ninety-eight percent of the Company’s average deposit base during the fourth quarter 2021, generating a low 0.03 percent annualized cost of funding interest-earning assets.
At December 31, 2021, nonperforming loans totaled $1.0 million and the
allowance for credit losses on loans was $23.5 million. The Company continues to work with loan customers requesting loan payment deferrals due to economic weakness caused by the pandemic. At December 31, 2021, loans with deferred payments totaled $84 thousand, all of which were consumer automobile loans.
Noninterest income for the fourth quarter 2021 totaled $10.8 million, compared to noninterest income for the third quarter 2021 of $11.3 million.
Noninterest expense for the fourth quarter 2021 was $23.9 million compared to $24.7 million for the third quarter 2021; the lower fourth quarter operating expenses were primarily personnel benefit costs and other expenses.
Westamerica Bancorporation’s wholly owned subsidiary Westamerica Bank, operates commercial banking and trust offices throughout Northern and Central California.
The following appears in accordance with the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995:
This press release may contain forward-looking statements about the Company, including descriptions of plans or objectives of its management for future operations, products or services, and forecasts of its revenues, earnings or other measures of economic performance. Forward-looking statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. They often include the words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “estimate,” or words of similar meaning, or future or conditional verbs such as “will,” “would,” “should,” “could,” or “may.”
Forward-looking statements, by their nature, are subject to risks and uncertainties. A number of factors — many of which are beyond the Company’s control — could cause actual conditions, events or results to differ significantly from those described in the forward-looking statements. The Company’s most recent reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the annual report for the year ended December 31, 2020 filed on Form 10-K and quarterly report for the quarter ended September 30, 2020 filed on Form 10-Q, describe some of these factors, including certain credit, interest rate, operational, liquidity and market risks associated with the Company’s business and operations. Other factors described in these reports include changes in business and economic conditions, competition, fiscal and monetary policies, disintermediation, cyber security risks, legislation including the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2011, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999, and mergers and acquisitions.
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For additional information contact:
Robert A. Thorson, Senior Vice President and Treasurer, (707) 863-6840