CAMBRIDGE, Ohio, April 29, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Camco Financial Corporation (Nasdaq:CAFI), the bank holding company for Advantage Bank, today announced financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2013, reporting net earnings of $499,000 for the first quarter of 2013 compared to $413,000 for the same period last year. There were 14,392,077 diluted shares outstanding at March 31, 2013, versus 7,220,130 a year ago, principally due to successful completion of a $10.0 million rights offering in November 2012. Diluted earnings per share were $0.03 for the first quarter of 2013 versus $0.06 the prior year. James E. Huston, President and CEO, stated, "We are pleased with the 21% increase in net earnings for the first quarter of 2013 compared to a year ago. Our results particularly benefited from further improvement in credit quality, which continued to strengthen key credit measures and enabled us to record a lower provision for losses on loans for the quarter versus the same period in 2012." Mr. Huston continued, "Specific initiatives are being implemented in this challenging rate environment to mitigate net interest margin pressures. They are being pursued through programs to increase core deposits; grow the total loan portfolio, especially through commercial loans; plus ongoing efforts to lower our cost of funds. Initial progress is being achieved and we anticipate these efforts will especially benefit our performance later this year." Review of Financial Performance Overview: The following items summarize key dynamics of the Company during the quarter ended March 31, 2013:
- Core deposits (defined as checking, savings and money market deposits) increased $25.0 million, or 8% to $331.8 million from the first quarter of 2012.
- Net Interest Income declined to $5.4 million from $6.2 million for the same period a year ago. This decrease was attributable to a reduction in loan balances, especially related to early loan payoffs in late-2012 and the anticipated reduction in certificates of deposit in late-2012 coupled with lower loan yields for the first quarter of 2013 versus the prior year. Growth in core deposits helped to mitigate the impact of the lower yield on earning assets.
- Noninterest income increased 6% to $2.1 million versus the same period a year ago primarily due to an increase in gain on sale of residential mortgage loans and higher gain on sale of investments.
- Noninterest expense increased 2% to $6.8 million compared with the first quarter of 2012 as a result of higher staffing costs, principally related to annual merit increases and growth initiatives, which were partially offset by lower professional fees, classified assets expense and costs associated with real estate owned.
- Classified assets (which include substandard, doubtful, loss, and real estate owned) were $35.3 million at March 31, 2013, representing a decrease of $16.9 million, or 32%, from the same date in 2012.