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First Niagara Reports First Quarter 2013 Results

First Quarter Highlights:
  • Net Income of $0.17 per share included $0.01 in executive departure related charges
  • Operating revenues declined 1% QOQ primarily driven by a 3% decline in fee income
  • Net interest margin of 3.39% decreased 3 basis points from adjusted fourth quarter
  • Lower margins drove a 20% QOQ decline in mortgage banking revenues
  • Operating expenses declined $3.7 million from the prior quarter adjusted for executive departure related charges
  • Average total loans increased 11% annualized QOQ driven by 13 th consecutive quarter of double-digit increases in average commercial lending
  • Double-digit average commercial growth rates QOQ in each of the company's geographies
  • New York commercial loans increased 9% annualized since HSBC Transaction
  • Interest-bearing checking balances up 19% annualized
  • New checking account unit production per branch increased 15% QOQ
  • Mobile banking platform successfully launched in January 2013
  • Strong credit quality maintained
  • Originated NPL balances flat QOQ and declined 4 basis points to 1.03% of originated loans
  • NCOs equaled 0.27% of average originated loans, compared to 0.35% in 2012

BUFFALO, N.Y., April 19, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Niagara Financial Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:FNFG) today announced first quarter 2013 results that reflect continued organic loan growth, particularly in commercial lending, positive operating leverage driven by strong focus on expense management, and strong credit quality.

"Our first-quarter results are evidence of our continued strong fundamentals and a focus on enhancing shareholder value," said Gary Crosby, Interim President and Chief Executive Officer. "We are driving profitable growth by enabling our people to provide our customers what they need every day, and focusing on the efficiency and effectiveness of our organization as never before. In 2013, it is "business as usual" at First Niagara as we continue to execute our existing strategic plan, focusing on managing expenses, maintaining our strong credit quality and maximizing the company's potential in the diverse and attractive markets we serve."

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