Review of Operations
Net interest income, before the provision for loan losses, was $1.6 million in the first quarter of 2012, compared to $1.8 million in the preceding quarter and $3.8 million in the first quarter of 2011. Discount accretion contributed $469,000 to first quarter interest income compared to $507,000 in the preceding quarter and $2.2 million in the year ago quarter.
Western Liberty did not need to record a provision for loan losses compared to $1.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2011, and $1.4 million in the first quarter of 2011. “We have rebuilt our allowance for loan losses during the past five quarters which now stands at $2.7 million, or 2.62% of gross loans,” said Ochal. The allowance for loan losses totaled $1.3 million, or 1.26% of total loans at March 31, 2011.
During the first quarter non-interest income increased to $219,000 up from $117,000 in the preceding quarter and $121,000 in the year ago quarter. This revenue is primarily attributable to $58,000 in OREO income from the operations of an OREO property in Southern Nevada.
Noninterest expense for the first quarter of 2012 remained flat at $2.9 million when compared to $2.9 million a year ago. In spite of this, noninterest expense included a $51,000 increase in salaries and employee benefits expense as well as a $9,000 increase in advertising and business development from the year ago quarter. However, legal and professional fees decreased $186,000, but continue to be elevated. In addition, there was a property impairment charge of $117,000 in the first quarter of 2012. Management will continue to monitor and control expenses.
About Western Liberty Bancorp
Western Liberty Bancorp is a Nevada bank holding company which conducts operations through Service1st Bank of Nevada, its wholly owned banking subsidiary, and its newly created wholly-owned subsidiary Las Vegas Sunset Properties. Service1st Bank operates as a traditional community bank and provides a full range of deposit, lending and other banking services to locally owned businesses, professional firms, individuals and other customers from its headquarters and two retail banking facilities located in the greater Las Vegas area. Services provided include basic commercial and consumer depository services, commercial working capital and equipment loans, commercial real estate loans, and other traditional commercial banking services. Primarily all of the bank’s business is generated in the Nevada market.