MONESSEN, Pa., Oct. 31, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- FedFirst Financial Corporation (Nasdaq:FFCO) (the "Company"), the parent company of First Federal Savings Bank (the "Bank"), today announced net income of $463,000 for the three months ended September 30, 2013 compared to $649,000 for the three months ended September 30, 2012, a decrease of $186,000 or 28.7%. Diluted earnings per share was $0.19 for the three months ended September 30, 2013 compared to $0.23 for the three months ended September 30, 2012, a decrease of $0.04 per share or 17.4%. The Company reported net income of $1.8 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2013 compared to $1.7 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, an increase of $134,000 or 7.9%. Diluted earnings per share was $0.75 for the nine months ended September 30, 2013 compared to $0.60 for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, an increase of $0.15 per share or 25.0%.
"The low interest rate environment continues to present a challenge for community banks and the ability to maintain our net interest margin," said Patrick G. O'Brien, President and CEO. "The uptick in rates in the third quarter helped to slow refinance activity, which contributed to a 2.5% increase in the loan portfolio in the quarter. We also continue to benefit from strong results from our insurance agency subsidiary, Exchange Underwriters. Offsetting these gains was a slight increase in credit costs, which reflects the unevenness of the economic recovery in our market area."
Third Quarter ResultsNet interest income for the three months ended September 30, 2013 decreased $152,000, or 5.7%, to $2.5 million compared to $2.6 million for the three months ended September 30, 2012. Modifications and payoffs of higher yielding loans and securities due to the continued low interest rate environment resulted in a $345,000 decline in interest income. This was partially offset by interest rate reductions and decreases in average balances on higher-cost deposits that resulted in a $116,000 decrease in deposits expense and payoffs on borrowings that resulted in a $77,000 decrease in borrowings expense.
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