We will begin the call with management's prepared remarks and then open the call up to questions. However, before we begin today's call, it is my responsibility to inform you that this call may involve certain forward-looking statements such as projections of revenue, earnings and capital structure, as well as statements on the plans and objectives of the company's business. The company's actual results could differ materially from any forward-looking statements made today due to the important factors described in the company's latest Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements made during the call. If anyone does not already have a copy of the press release issued by Mercantile today, you can access it at the company's website at www.mercbank.com. At this time, I would like to turn the call over to Mercantile's CEO, Mr. Michael Price. Mike?Michael Price Thank you, Karen, and good morning, everyone. And thank you for your interest in our company. I'm extremely happy to report that the earnings momentum generated in the first quarter of this year has really taken a hold and expanded during the second quarter. our Chief Financial Officer, Chuck Christmas, and Bob Kaminski, our Chief Operating Officer, will detail the quarter where we saw significant increase in profitability, substantial decreases in our nonperforming assets and good performance in our margin and overhead measurements. While the nation's economic recovery remains unsteady and uneven and the clean-up work in our nonperforming assets is not yet over, we are very gratified that the hard work of our bankers employed during the past 3 years are starting to really to pay off. We feel confident to say that the worst effects of the Great Recession are behind us. And while we remain vigilant regarding our asset quality, we look forward to growing the franchise again. At this time, I'll turn it over to Chuck.
Charles ChristmasThanks, Mike. Good morning, everybody. This morning, we announced that we recorded net income of $2.4 million during the second quarter of 2011 compared to a net loss of $0.7 million during the second quarter of last year. This $3.1 million improvement expands to $3.9 million if we excluded federal income tax benefit recorded during the second quarter of last year. Net income totaled $3.5 million during the first 6 months of 2011 compared to a net loss of $3.6 million during the first 6 months of 2010. This $7.1 million improvement expands to $9.1 million if we exclude the federal income tax benefit recorded during the first 6 months of last year and onetime investment and loan sales gains recorded during the first quarter of 2010. The improved operating results reflect improvements in many key areas of our financial condition and operating performance but especially reflect the significant lower provision expense and the historically high net interest margin. We are, of course, pleased to be able to report a net profit for the second quarter of this year, our second consecutive profitable quarter after 2 years of quarterly losses reflecting improved economic conditions combined with the positive impact of numerous strategies developed and implemented over the past several years. Declining nonperforming asset levels, a clean loan portfolio along with home credit underwriting and administration practices, a vastly improved net interest margin, lower controllable overhead costs and improved liquidity position through substantial local deposit growth and dramatically reduced reliance on wholesale funding and strong and improving regulatory capital ratios provide us with cautious optimism as we look to our future earnings performance and overall financial condition. Yes, much work lies ahead and many headwinds continue to face Mercantile, the banking industry and the economy at all levels. However, we believe we are well positioned to succeed as a strong community bank and continue to play a pivotal role within the markets where we serve. During the second quarter of 2011, we saw the continuation of very positive trends we reported during the past couple of years, and I'd like to touch on some of them. Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com