Community Bankers Trust Corporation (the “Company”) (NYSE Amex: BTC), the holding company for Essex Bank (the “Bank”), reported a net loss available to common stockholders for the quarter ended March 31, 2010 of $3.0 million, or $0.14 per diluted common share, compared with net income available to common stockholders of $9.9 million, or $0.46 per diluted common share, for the first quarter of 2009. The magnitude of the change in quarterly earnings year-over-year was heavily influenced by the one time after tax gain of $13.4 million taken in the first quarter of 2009 related to the Suburban Federal Savings Bank (SFSB) acquisition.
The loss incurred during the first quarter of 2010 was primarily the result of the following:
- The Company recorded a provision for loan losses of $5.0 million. This provision was the direct result of $3.4 million in net charge-offs incurred during the quarter and additional provisions to increase the allowance for loan losses to total non-covered loans.
- The Company reported net write-downs and losses on the sale of other real estate owned covered by the FDIC shared-loss agreements of $447,000, comprised of $2.2 million of write-downs and losses offset by $1.7 million due from the FDIC.
- Noninterest expenses were 5.03% higher in the first quarter of 2010 compared to the first quarter of 2009. The single largest increase in non-interest expenses was higher personnel costs.
George M. Longest, Jr., the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, “Asset quality issues continue to hinder earnings, yet we feel confident that our balance sheet is well positioned for the future due to our solid liquidity, reserves and equity base. As indicated in our recent announcement of changes in management assignments, we are focused on the organic growth of the Company through deposit growth and prudent lending. We have recently expanded our Special Assets area to provide additional resources to address problem assets. We continue to look for opportunities to enhance efficiencies in our operations and return the Company to profitability. On a positive note, our investment portfolio, which represents 30% of our asset base, has performed well and provides ample liquidity for the Bank, which is a tangible benefit in these uncertain banking times.”