ASHEVILLE, N.C., April 29, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- HomeTrust Bancshares, Inc. (Nasdaq:HTBI) (Company), the holding company of HomeTrust Bank, today announced preliminary net income of $2.6 million for the third quarter of fiscal year 2013, compared to $2.0 million for the same period a year ago. Net income totaled $6.0 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2013 compared to net income of $3.1 million for the same period in 2012. The increase in net income for the third quarter of fiscal 2013 was a result of the decrease in the provision for losses on loans. On a basic and diluted per share basis, the Company earned $0.13 per share and $0.30 per share for the three and nine months ended March 31, 2013, respectively, while it had no shares outstanding during the three and nine month periods ended March 31, 2012. In announcing these results, Dana Stonestreet, President and COO, said, "Our earnings continue to benefit from a lower provision for loan losses due to a decrease in net charge offs. Noninterest expense for the period reflects planned process improvements as well as investments in infrastructure to support the Company's plan for strategic market growth." Income Statement Review Net interest income was $13.0 million for the three months ended March 31, 2013 compared to $13.9 million for the three months ended March 31, 2012. Net interest income for the third quarter of fiscal 2013 decreased $871,000, or 6.3%, compared to the same period in the prior year as declines in interest income on loans of $2.0 million outpaced a decrease in deposit and other borrowing costs of $1.1 million. Net interest margin (on a fully taxable-equivalent basis) for the three months ended March 31, 2013 decreased 31 basis points over the same period last year to 3.78%, primarily due to a 62 basis point decline in the yield on interest-earning assets (on a fully taxable-equivalent basis) to 4.23%, partially offset by a 26 basis point decline in the rate paid on interest-bearing liabilities to 0.60%.