Loan growth fuels record quarter for WashTrust

'We've seen considerable progress in improving commercial loan-asset quality.'

Washington Trust Bancorp Inc., parent company of The Washington Trust Co., posted a record second-quarter profit of $8.7 million, or 53 cents per diluted share, a rise of 15 percent compared to the same period last year, on continued growth in mortgage and commercial loans. More

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BANKING

Loan growth fuels record quarter for WashTrust

'We've seen considerable progress in improving commercial loan-asset quality.'

COURTESY GREATER CITY PROVIDENCE/JEF NICKERSON
WASHINGTON TRUST Providence Branch.
Posted 7/30/12

Washington Trust Bancorp Inc., parent company of The Washington Trust Co., posted a record second-quarter profit of $8.7 million, or 53 cents per diluted share, a rise of 15 percent compared to the same period last year, on continued growth in mortgage and commercial loans.

The results marked the third consecutive record-setting quarter for the company, the Westerly-based bank announced July 23.

Washington Trust posted a 6 percent year-over-year increase in total revenue for the period to $46.4 million.

Bank Chairman, President and CEO Joseph J. MarcAurele attributed the results to “solid growth” in mortgage and commercial banking, as well as strong asset quality. “Our results for the quarter were very solid, particularly in light of the economy. We continue to feel good about our market position,” MarcAurele said. “We hope to keep the momentum going but remain somewhat cautious due to the sluggish economy.”

Total loans were $2.2 billion on June 30, 2012, up by $58 million, or 3 percent from the close of the first quarter. Loans were led by a growth of $53 million, or 5 percent, in the commercial-loan portfolio. Total deposits were $2.1 billion at June 30, 2012, down slightly from March 31, 2012. Year-to-date, total loans increased by $66.7 million, or 3 percent, including a 6 percent increase in total commercial loans. “We’ve seen considerable progress in improving commercial loan-asset quality. Residential is manageable but very low when compared to commercial property,” MarcAurele said.

Balances of nonperforming assets – nonaccrual loans, nonaccrual investment securities and property acquired through foreclosure or repossession – loan delinquencies and troubled debt restructurings all declined in the three months ended June 30.

Mortgage-banking revenue totaled $3 million for the quarter, consistent with the prior quarter and reflective of continued strong mortgage-origination volume, according to the bank’s release.

The loan-loss provision charged to earnings in the second quarter of 2012 was $600,000, compared to $900,000 in the previous quarter. The $600,000 was the lowest since the first quarter of 2008.

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