Heartland Financial USA, Inc. Reports Third Quarter 2012 Results

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Heartland Financial USA, Inc. Reports Third Quarter 2012 Results

DUBUQUE, Iowa--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Heartland Financial USA, Inc. (NAS: HTLF) :

Quarterly Highlights

  • Net income of $13.6 million or $0.75 per diluted common share
  • Net interest margin of 3.84%
  • Provision for loan and lease losses decreased $3.5 million over the second quarter 2012
  • Gains on sale of loans increased $1.1 million or 8% over record second quarter 2012
  • Deposit growth of $168.1 million since June 30, 2012
  • Nonperforming assets decreased $6.4 million since June 30, 2012
  • Acquisition of three banking offices from Liberty Bank, FSB completed on July 13, 2012
  • Merger agreement with First Shares, Inc. announced on August 2, 2012
  • Stock purchase agreement with Heritage Bank, N.A. announced on October 11, 2012
  

 Quarter Ended 

  Nine Months Ended
September 30,September 30,
 
2012  20112012  2011
Net income (in millions)$13.6$7.4$40.4$21.8
Net income available to common stockholders (in millions)12.63.437.415.2
Diluted earnings per common share0.750.202.240.92
 
Return on average assets1.11%0.33%1.14%0.50%
Return on average common equity16.794.9717.447.77
Net interest margin3.844.144.034.18
 
"Heartland continued its streak of excellent quarterly earnings reports today, nearly doubling earnings from last year's third quarter, and reporting the second best quarterly earnings in our 31-year history."

 

Lynn B. Fuller, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Heartland Financial USA, Inc.

 

Heartland Financial USA, Inc. (Nasdaq: HTLF) today reported net income of $13.6 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2012, an increase of $6.2 million or 85 percent from the $7.4 million recorded for the third quarter of 2011. Net income available to common stockholders was $12.6 million, or $0.75 per diluted common share, for the quarter ended September 30, 2012, compared to $3.4 million, or $0.20 per diluted common share, for the third quarter of 2011. Return on average common equity was 16.79 percent and return on average assets was 1.11 percent for the third quarter of 2012, compared to 4.97 percent and 0.33 percent, respectively, for the same quarter in 2011.

Net income recorded for the first nine months of 2012 was $40.4 million, compared to $21.8 million recorded during the first nine months of 2011. Net income available to common stockholders was $37.4 million, or $2.24 per diluted common share, for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, compared to $15.2 million, or $0.92 per diluted common share, earned during the first nine months of 2011. Return on average common equity was 17.44 percent and return on average assets was 1.14 percent for the first nine months of 2012, compared to 7.77 percent and 0.50 percent, respectively, for the same period in 2011.

Earnings for both the third quarter and first nine months of 2012, in comparison to the same periods in 2011, were most significantly affected by the continued expansion of mortgage operations in both new and existing markets, coupled with increased net interest income, reductions in provision for loan and lease losses and increased securities gains. The effect of these improvements was partially offset by increases in salaries and employee benefits, professional fees, net losses on repossessed assets and other noninterest expenses.

On July 13, 2012, Heartland completed the purchase of three retail banking offices from Liberty Bank, FSB in its Dubuque, Iowa market. The purchase was completed through Dubuque Bank and Trust Company. It included loans of $9.6 million and deposits of $53.4 million.

Commenting on Heartland's third quarter results, Lynn B. Fuller, Heartland's chairman, president and chief executive officer said, "Heartland continued its streak of excellent quarterly earnings reports today, nearly doubling earnings from last year's third quarter, and reporting the second best quarterly earnings in our 31-year history."

Net Interest Margin Dips Below 4.00 Percent; Increases in Dollars

Net interest margin, expressed as a percentage of average earning assets, was 3.84 percent during the third quarter of 2012 compared to 4.05 percent for the second quarter of 2012 and 4.14 percent for the third quarter of 2011. For the nine-month periods ended September 30, net interest margin was 4.03 percent during 2012 and 4.18 percent during 2011. These declines are a result of the sustained low interest rate environment where yields on the securities and loan portfolios are declining at a greater pace than rates paid on deposits and other borrowings.

Fuller said, "As we had expected, Heartland's net interest margin slipped below 4 percent in the quarter to 3.84 percent. Though our margin reflected the realities of this low-rate environment, net interest income in dollars remained solid, increasing over last year's quarter and year-to-date periods."

On a tax-equivalent basis, interest income in the third quarter of 2012 was $48.5 million compared to $49.1 million in the third quarter of 2011, a decrease of $629,000 or 1 percent. For the first nine months of 2012, interest income on a tax-equivalent basis was $147.2 million compared to $148.4 million during the same period in 2011, a decrease of $1.2 million or 1 percent. Even though average earning assets increased $395.0 million or 11 percent during the third quarter of 2012 compared to the third quarter of 2011 and $284.7 million or 8 percent during the first nine months of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011, this growth did not cover the decline in interest income due to a decrease in the rates earned on these assets. The average interest rate earned on these assets was 4.80 percent during the third quarter of 2012 compared to 5.38 percent during the third quarter of 2011. For the first nine months of the year, the average interest rate earned on these assets was 5.05 percent during 2012 compared to 5.50 percent during 2011. The most significant contributor to these declines was the overall yield earned on the securities portfolio, which decreased 89 basis points during the quarter ended September 30, 2012, compared to the same quarter in 2011 and 72 basis points during the nine months ended September 30, 2012, compared to the same nine months in 2011.

Interest expense for the third quarter of 2012 was $9.7 million, a decrease of $1.6 million or 14 percent from $11.4 million in the third quarter of 2011. On a nine-month comparative basis, interest expense decreased $5.9 million or 17 percent. Even though average interest bearing liabilities increased $232.6 million or 8 percent for the quarter ended September 30, 2012, as compared to the same quarter in 2011, and $142.7 million or 5 percent for the nine month period ended on September 30, 2012, as compared to the same nine month period in 2011, the average interest rate paid on Heartland's deposits and borrowings declined 30 basis points during the quarterly period under comparison and 32 basis points during the nine-month period under comparison. Contributing to this improvement in interest expense was a change in the mix of deposits. Average savings balances, the lowest cost interest-bearing deposits, as a percentage of total average interest bearing deposits was 68 percent during both the third quarter and first nine month periods of 2012 compared to 65 percent for the third quarter of 2011 and 64 percent for the first nine months of 2011. Additionally, the average interest rate paid on savings deposits was 0.38 percent during the third quarter of 2012 and 0.39 percent during the first nine months of 2012 compared to 0.54 percent during the third quarter of 2011 and 0.61 percent during the first nine months of 2011.

Net interest income on a tax-equivalent basis totaled $38.8 million during the third quarter of 2012, an increase of $980,000 or 3 percent from the $37.8 million recorded during the third quarter of 2011. For the first nine months of 2012, net interest income on a tax-equivalent basis was $117.6 million, an increase of $4.8 million or 4 percent from the $112.8 million recorded during the first nine months of 2011.

Growth in Noninterest Income Outpaces Increase in Noninterest Expense

Noninterest income during the third quarter of 2012 hit a quarterly high of $29.8 million, an increase of $16.5 million or 124 percent over the $13.3 million recorded during the third quarter of 2011 and an increase of $1.5 million or 5 percent over the previous quarterly record set in the second quarter of 2012. For the nine-month period ended September 30, noninterest income was $81.4 million in 2012 compared to $40.5 million in 2011, an increase of $40.9 million or 101 percent. The categories contributing most significantly to the improvement in noninterest income during both periods were loan servicing income and gains on sale of loans. Gains on sale of loans totaled $13.8 million during the third quarter of 2012 compared to $3.2 million during the third quarter of 2011 and $12.7 million during the second quarter of 2012. For the nine-month period ended September 30, gains on sale of loans totaled $34.9 million during 2012 compared to $5.9 million during 2011. The volume of loans sold totaled $448.7 million during the third quarter of 2012, more than four times the $97.6 million sold during the third quarter of 2011. For the nine months ended September 30, the volume of loans sold totaled $1.1 billion during 2012 compared to $244.4 million during 2011. Pricing received on the sale of fixed rate residential mortgage loans into the secondary market improved through a bulk delivery method that was implemented during the second quarter of 2011, instead of an individual delivery method that had been used previously. At the same time, secondary market pricing began to be matched with origination pricing through the use of a software tool that assists in hedging the locked rate pipeline position. Other major contributors to the increase in noninterest income for the nine-month comparative period were securities gains and other noninterest income. Securities gains totaled $14.1 million during the first nine months of 2012 compared to $8.9 million during the first nine months of 2011, as volatility in the bond market continued to provide opportunities to swap securities from one sector of the portfolio to another without significantly changing the duration of the portfolio. Offsetting, in part, the securities gains was an impairment loss on securities totaling $981,000 recorded during the first quarter of 2012. Other noninterest income totaled $3.3 million during the first nine months of 2012 compared to a loss of $126,000 during the first nine months of 2011. Included in other noninterest income during the first quarter of 2012 was $2.0 million in equity earnings which resulted from the sale of two low-income housing projects within partnerships in which Dubuque Bank and Trust Company was a member.

Loan servicing income increased $1.9 million or 179 percent for the third quarter of 2012 as compared to the third quarter of 2011 and $3.9 million or 99 percent for the first nine months of 2012 compared to the first nine months of 2011. Two components of loan servicing income, mortgage servicing rights and amortization of mortgage servicing rights, are dependent upon the level of loans Heartland originates and sells into the secondary market, which in turn is highly influenced by market interest rates for home mortgage loans. Mortgage servicing rights income was $3.3 million during the third quarter of 2012 compared to $743,000 during the third quarter of 2011 and amortization of mortgage servicing rights was $1.9 million during the third quarter of 2012 compared to $1.1 million during the third quarter of 2011. Loan servicing income also includes the fees collected for the servicing of mortgage loans for others, which is dependent upon the aggregate outstanding balance of these loans, rather than quarterly production and sale of mortgage loans. Fees collected for the servicing of mortgage loans for others were $1.1 million during the third quarter of 2012 compared to $908,000 during the third quarter of 2011. The portfolio of mortgage loans serviced for others by Heartland totaled $1.96 billion at September 30, 2012, compared to $1.47 billion at September 30, 2011. Heartland believes long term success in the mortgage banking business will depend on its ability to shift toward purchase originations, which will drive revenue when the refinance boom comes to an end. For the third quarter of 2012, refinancing activity represented 64 percent of total mortgage originations compared to 58 percent during the second quarter of 2012.

The following table summarizes Heartland's residential mortgage loan activity during the most recent five quarters:

  As Of and For the Quarter Ended
(Dollars in thousands)9/30/2012  6/30/2012  3/31/2012  12/31/2011  9/30/2011
Mortgage Servicing Fees$1,123$1,037$967$932$908
Mortgage Servicing Rights Income3,3162,6141,9861,380743
Mortgage Servicing Rights Amortization(1,896)(1,112)(1,718)(862)(1,103)
Total Residential Mortgage Loan Servicing Income$2,543 $2,539 $1,235 $1,450 $548 
Valuation Adjustment on Mortgage Servicing Rights$(493)$(194)$13$(19)$
Gains On Sale of Loans$13,750$12,689$8,502$5,473$3,183
Total Residential Mortgage Loan Applications$672,382$638,595$549,315$301,551$262,952
Residential Mortgage Loans Originated$488,658$374,743$293,724$253,468$143,317
Residential Mortgage Loans Sold$448,704$360,743$243,836$208,494$97,591
Residential Mortgage Loan Servicing Portfolio$1,963,567$1,776,912$1,626,129$1,541,417$1,467,127
 

For the third quarter of 2012, noninterest expense totaled $47.2 million, an increase of $15.3 million or 48 percent from the same quarter of 2011. For the nine-month period ended September 30, noninterest expense totaled $128.8 million in 2012 compared to $97.1 million in 2011, a $31.7 million or 33 percent increase. Contributing to these increases in noninterest expense were a $9.3 million or 53 percent increase in salaries and employee benefits for the quarter and a $23.0 million or 43 percent increase for the nine-month period, a large portion of which resulted from the expansion of residential loan origination and the addition of personnel in the Heartland Mortgage and National Residential Mortgage unit. Commission expense was $5.7 million during the third quarter of 2012 compared to $1.3 million during the third quarter of 2011. For the nine-month comparative period ended on September 30, commission expense totaled $14.0 million during 2012 and $3.3 million during 2011. The increases in commission expense are a direct result of the increased mortgage loan origination activity. Additionally, the accrual for incentive plan compensation payouts was significantly higher in 2012, in direct correlation with the higher period to date earnings and the reinstatement of incentive compensation for Heartland's executive officers after the repayment of TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) funds. Full-time equivalent employees totaled 1,391 on September 30, 2012, compared to 1,105 on September 30, 2011. Also contributing to the increases in noninterest expense were increased net losses on repossessed assets, resulting primarily from the revaluation on two other real estate owned properties, and increased other noninterest expenses, a large portion of which was attributable to the ramp up of our mortgage origination operations, including provisions to a reserve for the potential buyback of residential mortgage loans.

Fuller commented, "The expansion of our mortgage unit is also propelling Heartland forward. In the first nine months of 2012, we have originated $1.2 billion in mortgages and expect this number to increase as loan production teams grow in size and capabilities."

Heartland's effective tax rate was 32.73 percent for the first nine months of 2012 compared to 28.37 percent for the first nine months of 2011. Federal low-income housing tax credits included in Heartland's effective tax rate totaled $599,000 during the first nine months of both 2012 and 2011. Heartland's effective tax rate is also affected by the level of tax-exempt interest income which, as a percentage of pre-tax income, was 16.65 percent during the first nine months of 2012 compared to 25.87 percent during the first nine months of 2011. The tax-equivalent adjustment for this tax-exempt interest income was $5.4 million during the first nine months of 2012 compared to $4.2 million during the first nine months of 2011.

Sustained, But Slower Net Loan Growth; Strong Deposit Growth

Total assets were $4.59 billion at September 30, 2012, an increase of $288.1 million since December 31, 2011, with $165.5 million of this growth occurring in the third quarter and $114.8 million in the second quarter. Included in the asset growth for the third quarter of 2012 were the $53.5 million in assets acquired from Liberty Bank, FSB. Securities represented 29 percent of total assets at September 30, 2012, compared to 31 percent at year-end 2011.

Total loans and leases held to maturity were $2.65 billion at September 30, 2012, compared to $2.48 billion at year-end 2011, an increase of $166.7 million or 9 percent annualized, with $18.4 million occurring during the third quarter and $97.2 million during the second quarter. Included in the loan growth for the third quarter of 2012 were the $9.6 million in loans acquired from Liberty Bank, FSB. Commercial and commercial real estate loans, which totaled $1.90 billion at September 30, 2012, increased $92.9 million or 7 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with a decrease of $1.6 million during the third quarter and $61.4 million in growth occurring in the second quarter. Two larger relationships with outstanding balances totaling $10.8 million were paid off this quarter when the businesses were sold. Additionally, payoffs totaling $9.6 million were received on a few credits as part of exit strategies related to the increased credit risk identified in these relationships. Excluding these nonrecurring events, loan production continues its positive trend over the past several quarters. Residential mortgage loans, which totaled $229.0 million at September 30, 2012, increased $34.5 million or 24 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with $8.9 million of this growth occurring during the third quarter and $17.2 million in the second quarter. Agricultural and agricultural real estate loans, which totaled $283.7 million at September 30, 2012, increased $20.7 million or 11 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with $4.4 million of this growth occurring in the third quarter and $8.6 million in the second quarter. Consumer loans, which totaled $236.6 million at September 30, 2012, increased $16.5 million or 10 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with $6.0 million of the growth occurring during the third quarter and $8.2 million during the second quarter.

Fuller stated, "An important contributor to Heartland's exceptional performance thus far this year is solid loan growth, which continued in the third quarter. Our growth strategy emphasizes proactive business development, calling on potential new commercial, agri-business and small business clients. It's also worth noting that we have nearly achieved our lending goal of approximately $92 million with respect to the US Treasury's Small Business Lending Fund."

Total deposits were $3.50 billion at September 30, 2012, compared to $3.21 billion at year-end 2011, an increase of $292.9 million or 12 percent annualized, with $168.1 million of the growth occurring during the third quarter and $59.1 million during the second quarter. Included in the deposit growth for the third quarter of 2012 were the $53.4 million in deposits acquired from Liberty Bank, FSB. The composition of Heartland's deposits continues to improve as no-cost demand deposits as a percentage of total deposits was 25 percent at September 30, 2012, compared to 23 percent at year-end 2011. Demand deposits increased $140.5 million or 25 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with $78.2 million of this growth occurring during the third quarter and $28.1 million during the second quarter. Savings deposits increased $131.2 million or 10 percent annualized since December 31, 2011, with $75.6 million of this growth occurring during the third quarter and $2.8 million during the second quarter. Certificates of deposit, exclusive of brokered deposits, increased $5.4 million or 1 percent annualized since year-end 2011, with $9.2 million during the third quarter and $18.2 million during the second quarter, due primarily to additional deposits from a few public entities in the Dubuque, Iowa market. As a percentage of total deposits, certificates of deposit remained below 25 percent at September 30, 2012.

"We continue to see growth in no-cost demand and low-cost savings and money market deposits. The favorable shift in deposit mix continues with these non-time categories now representing 77 percent of total deposits," Fuller added.

Provision for Loan Losses Continues at Lower Levels; Nonperforming Assets Decline

The allowance for loan and lease losses at September 30, 2012, was 1.53 percent of loans and leases and 99.16 percent of nonperforming loans compared to 1.48 percent of loans and leases and 64.09 percent of nonperforming loans at December 31, 2011, and 1.86 percent of loans and leases and 60.85 percent of nonperforming loans at September 30, 2011. The provision for loan losses was a negative $502,000 for the third quarter of 2012 compared to expense of $7.7 million for the third quarter of 2011, an $8.2 million or 106 percent decrease, primarily as a result of the collection in full of a loan that had an impairment reserve of $1.3 million that had been established through the provision for loan losses in a previous quarter. For the first nine months of 2012, provision for loan losses was $4.9 million compared to $21.6 million for the first nine months of 2011, a $16.7 million or 78 percent decrease. A reduction in the level of the allowance for loan and lease losses maintained for impaired loans was the primary contributor to the lower provision during the first nine months of 2012. The portion of the allowance for loan and lease losses maintained for impaired loans has decreased $7.4 million since September 30, 2011, leaving the allowance on non-impaired loans relatively stable at 1.33 percent of loans and leases at September 30, 2012, compared to 1.34 percent at September 30, 2011.

Nonperforming loans, exclusive of those covered under loss sharing agreements, were $40.7 million or 1.54 percent of total loans and leases at September 30, 2012, compared to $57.4 million or 2.31 percent of total loans and leases at December 31, 2011, and $72.6 million or 3.06 percent of total loans and leases at September 30, 2011. Approximately 44 percent, or $17.9 million, of Heartland's nonperforming loans have individual loan balances exceeding $1.0 million. These nonperforming loans, to an aggregate of 9 borrowers, are primarily concentrated in Heartland's banks serving the Western states, with $6.7 million originated by Arizona Bank & Trust, $3.4 million originated by Rocky Mountain Bank, $3.1 million originated by Wisconsin Bank & Trust (formerly known as Wisconsin Community Bank), $1.8 million originated by Galena State Bank & Trust Company, $1.5 million originated by New Mexico Bank & Trust and $1.4 million originated by Riverside Community Bank. The portion of Heartland's nonperforming loans covered by government guarantees was $650,000 at September 30, 2012. As identified using the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), $9.9 million of nonperforming loans with individual balances exceeding $1.0 million were for lot and land development and the remaining $8.0 million was distributed among five other industry categories.

Delinquencies in each of the loan portfolios continue to be relatively stable and no significant adverse trends were identified during the third quarter of 2012. Loans delinquent 30 to 89 days were 0.53 percent of total loans at September 30, 2012, compared to 0.46 percent at June 30, 2012, 0.55 percent at March 31, 2012, 0.23 percent at December 31, 2011, and 0.54 percent at September 30, 2011.

Other real estate owned was $36.1 million at September 30, 2012, compared to $37.9 million at June 30, 2012, $38.9 million at March 31, 2012, and $44.4 million at December 31, 2011. Liquidation strategies have been identified for all the assets held in other real estate owned. Management continues to market these properties through an orderly liquidation process instead of a quick liquidation process in order to avoid discounts greater than the projected carrying costs. During 2012, $4.2 million of other real estate owned was sold during the third quarter, $5.9 million during the second quarter and $12.4 million during the first quarter.

The schedules below summarize the changes in Heartland's nonperforming assets, including those covered by loss share agreements, during the third quarter of 2012 and the first nine months of 2012:

    Other  Other  Total
NonperformingReal EstateRepossessedNonperforming
(Dollars in thousands)LoansOwnedAssetsAssets
June 30, 2012$47,707$37,941$465$86,113
Loan foreclosures(5,553)5,5467
Net loan charge offs(536)(536)
New nonperforming loans6,2116,211
Reduction of nonperforming loans(1)(4,850)(4,850)
OREO/Repossessed sales proceeds(3,941)(11)(3,952)
OREO/Repossessed assets writedowns, net(3,407)(43)(3,450)
Net activity at Citizens Finance Co.  78 78 
September 30, 2012$42,979 $36,139 $496 $79,614 
 
(1) Includes principal reductions and transfers to performing status.
 
        
OtherOtherTotal
NonperformingReal EstateRepossessedNonperforming
(Dollars in thousands)LoansOwnedAssetsAssets
December 31, 2011$60,780$44,387$648$105,815
Loan foreclosures(20,192)20,10884
Net loan charge offs(1,259)(1,259)
New nonperforming loans15
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