ESB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: ESBF), the parent company of ESB Bank, today announced earnings of $0.28 per diluted share on net income of $3.4 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2010, which represents a 12.0% increase in net income per diluted share as compared to earnings of $0.25 per diluted share on net income of $3.0 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2009. The Company’s annualized return on average assets and average equity were 0.69% and 7.99%, respectively, for the quarter ended March 31, 2010.
Charlotte A. Zuschlag, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company, stated, “The Board of Directors, senior management and I are pleased with the improvement in earnings for the quarter ended March 31, 2010. The last several years have presented a challenging time for the banking industry. Our philosophy has been, and continues to be, to manage the net interest margin without compromising asset quality or future earnings potential while continuing to offer quality products to our customers. We were pleased to see the results of these efforts reflected in 2009 and now excited to have this trend continue into 2010. Our net interest margin improved approximately 29 basis points since December 31, 2009, earnings improved 11.5% over the quarter ended March 31, 2009 and our deposits grew $34.7 million since December 2009, primarily in core deposits. This growth in lower rate core deposits continues to assist in the enhancement of the net interest margin.” Ms. Zuschlag concluded by stating, “Management will continue to strive to pursue growth opportunities that will provide a sound investment return to our shareholders.”
Net income for the first quarter of 2010, as compared to the first quarter of 2009, increased by $348,000, or 11.5%, due to an increase in net interest income after provision for loan losses of $1.9 million and a decrease to the net income attributable to noncontrolling interest of $264,000, partially offset by a decrease in non-interest income of $1.2 million, as well as increases in non-interest expense and provision for income taxes of $426,000 and $223,000, respectively.