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First Merchants Corporation Announces 3rd Quarter Earnings Per Share Of $.35

Net-interest income totaled $39.9 million for the third quarter of 2012 and net-interest margin remained strong totaling 4.32 percent as yields on earning assets totaled 4.89 percent and the cost of supporting liabilities totaled .57 percent. Discount accretion resulting from the SCB transaction added $2.6 million, or 28 basis points, to net-interest income and net-interest margin for the third quarter of 2012. YTD net-interest income totaled $114.1 million, an increase of $6.9 million over the nine months of 2011.

Non-interest income totaled $14.3 million for the third quarter of 2012 and $50.1 million year-to-date. After normalizing for bond gains and losses and the first quarter 2012 FDIC gain, non-interest income improved by $4.4 million, or 13 percent, during the first nine months of the year. Gains from the sale of mortgage loans accounted for $2.4 million of the increase. Non-interest expense increased slightly on both a quarterly and year-to-date basis totaling $34.4 million and $102.6 million, respectively.

Provision expense totaled $4.6 million for the third quarter 2012 and $14.0 million year-to-date, compared to $5.6 million and $16.8 million in 2011. Net charge-offs were $5.3 million for the third quarter 2012 and $15.4 million year-to-date, compared to $9.6 million and $26.7 million in 2011. The allowance for loan losses is $69.5 million, or 2.43 percent of total loans and 122 percent of non-accrual loans, the highest coverage ratio since 2006.

As of September 30, 2012, the Corporation’s total risk-based capital equaled 16.62 percent, Tier 1 common risk-based capital equaled 9.71 percent, and tangible common equity ratio totaled 7.51 percent. As of September 30, 2011 the Corporation’s total risk-based capital equaled 16.21 percent, Tier 1 common risk-based capital equaled 8.53 percent, and tangible common equity ratio totaled 6.88 percent.

CONFERENCE CALL

First Merchants Corporation will conduct a third quarter earnings conference call and web cast at 2:30 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, October 25, 2012.

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