Heartland Financial USA, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2013 Results

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Heartland Financial USA, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2013 Results

Quarterly Highlights

  • Net income of $12.6 million or $0.70 per diluted common share
  • Return on average common equity of 15.18%
  • Net interest margin of 3.77%
  • Provision for loan and lease losses decreased $1.7 million or 73% over first quarter 2012
  • Gains on sale of loans increased $1.4 million or 17% over first quarter 2012
  • Nonperforming assets decreased $9.6 million or 12% since year-end 2012

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

  
Quarter Ended
March 31,
2013  2012
Net income (in millions)$12.6$12.8
Net income available to common stockholders (in millions)12.111.8
Diluted earnings per common share0.700.71
 
Return on average assets1.00%1.12%
Return on average common equity15.1817.27
Net interest margin3.774.23
 
 

"Like 2012, Heartland is off to an excellent start in 2013. With first quarter net income of $12.6 million, we had our fourth best quarter on record. The company's strong performance is the result of solid net interest income along with a sharp drop in the provision for loan and lease losses."

 

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

 

Heartland Financial USA, Inc. (Nasdaq: HTLF) today reported net income of $12.6 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2013, which was a slight decrease from the $12.8 million recorded for the first quarter of 2012. Net income available to common stockholders was $12.1 million, or $0.70 per diluted common share, for the quarter ended March 31, 2013, compared to $11.8 million, or $0.71 per diluted common share, for the first quarter of 2012. Return on average common equity was 15.18% and return on average assets was 1.00% for the first quarter of 2013, compared to 17.27% and 1.12%, respectively, for the same quarter in 2012.

Earnings for the first quarter of 2013, in comparison to the first quarter of 2012, were positively affected by a lower provision for loan and lease losses, an increase in loan servicing income and gains on sale of loans attributable to the continued expansion of our mortgage operations and a reduction in net losses on repossessed assets. The first quarter of 2012 included $2.0 million in equity earnings from the sale of two low-income housing projects within partnerships in which Dubuque Bank and Trust Company was a member. The absence of comparable other noninterest income during the first quarter of 2013, combined with a significant increase in salaries and employee benefits, offset the improvements discussed above.

Commenting on Heartland's first quarter results, Lynn B. Fuller, Heartland's chairman, president and chief executive officer said, "Like 2012, Heartland is off to an excellent start in 2013. With first quarter net income of $12.6 million, we had our fourth best quarter on record. The company's strong performance is the result of solid net interest income along with a sharp drop in the provision for loan and lease losses."

Net Interest Margin Percentage Remains Stable; Increases in Dollars

Net interest margin, expressed as a percentage of average earning assets, was 3.77% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to 3.81% during the fourth quarter of 2012 and 4.23% during the first quarter of 2012.

Fuller said, "Net interest margin continues to hold up reasonably well given the decline in asset yields. At this point, we do not anticipate a substantial change in margin for the near future."

On a tax-equivalent basis, interest income in the first quarter of 2013 was $50.0 million compared to $49.9 million in the first quarter of 2012. The small increase in interest income in the first quarter of 2013, as compared to the first quarter of 2012, was due to an increase in average earning assets, as the interest rate earned on those assets continued to decline throughout 2012 and the first quarter of 2013 due to the sustained low interest rate environment. The average interest rate earned on total earning assets was 4.60% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to 5.30% during the first quarter of 2012. The most significant contributor to these declines was the overall yield earned on the securities portfolio, which decreased 109 basis points during the quarter ended March 31, 2013, compared to the same quarter in 2012. Average earning assets increased $619.4 million or 16% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012, with approximately $180.0 million attributable to the three acquisitions completed during the third and fourth quarters of 2012.

Interest expense for the first quarter of 2013 was $9.0 million, a decrease of $1.0 million or 10% from $10.0 million in the first quarter of 2012. Even though average interest bearing liabilities increased $331.3 million or 11% for the quarter ended March 31, 2013, as compared to the same quarter in 2012, the average interest rate paid on Heartland's interest bearing deposits and borrowings declined 24 basis points decreasing from 1.31% in the first quarter of 2012 to 1.07% in the first quarter of 2013. Contributing to this improvement in interest expense was a continued 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 69% during the first quarter of 2013, compared to 68% for the first quarter of 2012. Additionally, the average interest rate paid on savings deposits was 0.34% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to 0.40% during the first quarter of 2012 and the average interest rate paid on time deposits was 1.61% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to 2.12% during the first quarter of 2012.

Net interest income on a tax-equivalent basis totaled $40.9 million during the first quarter of 2013, an increase of $1.1 million or 3% from the $39.8 million recorded during the first quarter of 2012.

Increases in Noninterest Income and Noninterest Expenses

Noninterest income was $26.5 million during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $23.4 million during the first quarter of 2012, an increase of $3.1 million or 13%. The categories contributing most significantly to the improvement in noninterest income in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012 were loan servicing income and gains on sale of loans. Loan servicing income increased $1.6 million or 92% for the first quarter of 2013 as compared to the first quarter of 2012 as mortgage servicing rights income, which is influenced by market interest rates for home mortgage loans and the level of loans Heartland originates and sells into the secondary market, increased significantly. 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 $1.4 million during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $967,000 during the first quarter of 2012. The portfolio of mortgage loans serviced for others by Heartland totaled $2.35 billion at March 31, 2013, compared to $1.63 billion at March 31, 2012. Gains on sale of loans, which result primarily from the sale of mortgage loans into the secondary market, totaled $9.9 million during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $8.5 million during the first quarter of 2012. The volume of mortgage loans sold totaled $424.9 million during the first quarter of 2013, a 74% increase over the $243.8 million sold during the first quarter of 2012.

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

  
As Of and For the Quarter Ended
3/31/2013  12/31/2012  9/30/2012  6/30/2012  3/31/2012
Mortgage Servicing Fees$1,430$1,304$1,123$1,037$967
Mortgage Servicing Rights Income3,2453,5353,3162,6141,986
Mortgage Servicing Rights Amortization(1,761)(1,871)(1,896)(1,112)(1,718)
Total Residential Mortgage Loan Servicing Income$2,914 $2,968 $2,543 $2,539 $1,235 
Valuation Adjustment on Mortgage Servicing Rights$496$197$(493)$(194)$13
Gains On Sale of Residential Mortgage Loans$9,641$13,966$13,750$12,689$8,502
Total Residential Mortgage Loan Applications$556,890$645,603$672,382$638,595$549,315
Residential Mortgage Loans Originated$432,974$490,525$488,658$374,743$293,724
Residential Mortgage Loans Sold$424,931$478,280$448,704$360,743$243,836
Residential Mortgage Loan Servicing Portfolio$2,349,596$2,199,486$1,963,567$1,776,912$1,626,129
 

As reflected in the table above, on a sequential quarterly basis, residential mortgage loan originations and the gains on sale of residential mortgage loans and the mortgage servicing rights income they create, decreased in the first quarter of 2013 as compared to the last quarter of 2012. These decreases resulted primarily from the seasonality typically experienced in mortgage loan activity during the first quarter of the year, coupled with a slight increase in residential mortgage loan interest rates. Heartland believes long term success in the mortgage banking business depends on its ability to shift toward the origination of loans for the purchase of new homes versus the refinance of mortgages on existing homes. For the first quarter of 2013, refinancing activity represented 70% of total mortgage loan originations compared to 71% during the fourth quarter of 2012, 64% during the third quarter of 2012 and 58% during the second quarter of 2012.

Securities gains totaled $3.4 million during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $3.9 million during the first quarter of 2012, 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 during the first quarter of 2012 was an impairment loss on securities totaling $981,000. Other noninterest income totaled $680,000 during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $2.6 million during the first quarter of 2012. Included in the 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.

For the first quarter of 2013, noninterest expense totaled $46.7 million, an increase of $6.6 million or 16% from the same quarter of 2012. The primary contributor to this increase was the $5.7 million or 24% increase in salaries and employee benefits, a large portion of which resulted from the expansion of Heartland's residential loan origination operations, with a smaller portion attributable to the additional employees joining Heartland through the acquisitions completed during last two quarters of 2012. Full-time equivalent employees increased from 1,253 on March 31, 2012, to 1,532 on March 31, 2013, approximately 35 of which were from the acquisitions. The noninterest expenses categories experiencing significant increases during the first quarter of 2013 in comparison to the first quarter of 2012 were occupancy, which increased $703,000 or 28%, furniture and equipment, which increased $605,000 or 42%, and professional fees, which increased $783,000 or 28%. The only noninterest expenses category that experienced a decrease during the first quarter of 2013 in comparison to the first quarter of 2012 was net losses on repossessed assets, which decreased $1.6 million or 54%.

Fuller commented, "We noticed a seasonal slowdown in residential refinancing activity during the first quarter, yet we are operating at a much higher production level than last year. As a result, gains on sale of loans showed a nice increase from last year's first quarter. We were pleased to see a noticeable shift from mortgage refinance activity toward new home purchase business at the end of the first quarter. In March, purchase business represented 48% of loan applications."

Heartland's effective tax rate was 29.39% for the first quarter of 2013 compared to 32.82% for the first quarter of 2012. Federal low-income housing tax credits included in Heartland's effective tax rate totaled $200,000 during both the first quarter of 2013 and 2012. 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 23.81% during the first quarter of 2013 compared to 15.95% during the first quarter of 2012. The tax-equivalent adjustment for this tax-exempt interest income was $2.3 million during the first quarter of 2013 compared to $1.6 million during the first quarter of 2012.

Slight Decreases in Both Loans and Deposits

Total assets were $4.90 billion at March 31, 2013, a decrease of $90.0 million since December 31, 2012. Securities represented 32% of total assets at March 31, 2013, compared to 31% at year-end 2012.

Total loans and leases held to maturity were $2.79 billion at March 31, 2013, compared to $2.82 billion at year-end 2012, a decrease of $31.7 million or 4% annualized, a good portion of which was attributable to seasonal paydowns on agricultural and commercial lines of credit. Additionally, payoffs were received on loans to borrowers who obtained lower rates and more liberal terms from competitors, including some we chose to exit due to increased credit risk evidenced in the relationship. Commercial and commercial real estate loans, which totaled $1.99 billion at March 31, 2013, decreased $10.7 million or 2% annualized since year-end 2012. Residential mortgage loans, which totaled $240.5 million at March 31, 2013, decreased $9.2 million or 15% annualized since year-end 2012. Agricultural and agricultural real estate loans, which totaled $314.6 million at March 31, 2013, decreased $13.7 million or 17% annualized since year-end 2012. Consumer loans, which totaled $247.0 million at March 31, 2013, increased $1.3 million or 2% annualized since year-end 2012.

"Growth in quality loans remains a high priority. We continue to emphasize new business development by calling on potential new commercial, agri-business and small business clients," added Fuller.

Total deposits were $3.84 billion at March 31, 2013, compared to $3.85 billion at year-end 2012, a decrease of $3.2 million or less than 1% annualized. Demand deposits totaled $971.1 million at March 31, 2013, a decrease of $3.1 million or 1% annualized since year-end 2012. Also experiencing a decrease during the quarter, certificates of deposit totaled $848.7 million at March 31, 2013, a decrease of $18.3 million or 8% annualized. Savings deposits experienced an increase during the quarter, growing to $2.02 billion at March 31, 2013, an increase of $18.2 million or 4% annualized. The composition of Heartland's deposits continued its positive trend as no-cost demand deposits as a percentage of total deposits was 25% at both March 31, 2013, and December 31, 2012, while higher-cost certificates of deposit as a percentage of total deposits was 22% at March 31, 2013, compared to 23% at December 31, 2012.

Fuller said, "We have seen significant deposit growth over the past year. Though some growth is the result of acquisitions, the majority is organic. The key low-cost categories of demand, savings and money markets accounted for nearly $500 million of our $567 million in total deposit growth since one year ago."

Decrease in Provision for Loan Losses; Decrease in Nonperforming Loans

The allowance for loan and lease losses at March 31, 2013, was 1.35% of loans and leases and 114.38% of nonperforming loans compared to 1.37% of loans and leases and 89.71% of nonperforming loans at December 31, 2012. The provision for loan losses was $637,000 for the first quarter of 2013 compared to $2.4 million for the first quarter of 2012, a $1.7 million or 73% decrease.

Nonperforming loans, exclusive of those covered under the loss sharing agreements, were $32.8 million or 1.18% of total loans and leases at March 31, 2013, compared to $43.2 million or 1.53% of total loans and leases at December 31, 2012. Approximately 42%, or $13.7 million, of Heartland's nonperforming loans have individual loan balances exceeding $1.0 million. These nonperforming loans, to an aggregate of 7 borrowers, are primarily concentrated in Heartland's banks serving the Western states, with $4.4 million originated by New Mexico Bank & Trust, $4.1 million originated by Rocky Mountain Bank, $1.7 million originated by Galena State Bank & Trust Co., $1.3 million originated by Riverside Community Bank, $1.2 million originated by Arizona Bank & Trust and $1.0 million originated by Wisconsin Bank & Trust. The portion of Heartland's nonperforming loans covered by government guarantees was $454,000 at March 31, 2013. The industry breakdown for nonperforming loans with individual balances exceeding $1.0 million, as identified using the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), was $8.4 million for lot and land development. The remaining $5.3 million was distributed among four other industry categories.

Delinquencies in each of the loan portfolios continue to be well-managed and no significant adverse trends were identified during the first quarter of 2013. Loans delinquent 30 to 89 days as a percent of total loans were 0.48% at March 31, 2013, compared to 0.32% at December 31, 2012, 0.53% at September 30, 2012, 0.46% at June 30, 2012, and 0.55% at March 31, 2012.

Other real estate owned was $36.7 million at March 31, 2013, compared to $35.8 million at December 31, 2012. 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 the first quarter of 2013, $3.3 million of other real estate owned was sold.

The schedule below summarizes the changes in Heartland's nonperforming assets, including those covered by loss share agreements, during the first quarter of 2013, in thousands:

        
OtherOtherTotal
NonperformingReal EstateRepossessedNonperforming
LoansOwnedAssetsAssets
December 31, 2012$44,415$35,822$542$80,779
Loan foreclosures(5,330)4,843487
Net loan charge offs(1,824)(1,824)
New nonperforming loans3,3623,362
Reduction of nonperforming loans(1)(7,177)(7,177)
OREO/Repossessed assets sales proceeds(3,292)(31)(3,323)
OREO/Repossessed assets writedowns, net(669)(23)(692)
Net activity at Citizens Finance Co.  84 84 
March 31, 2013$33,446 $36,704 $1,059 $71,209 
 

(1) Includes principal reductions and transfers to performing status.

 

Net charge-offs on loans during the first quarter of 2013 were $1.8 million compared to net recoveries of $200,000 during the first quarter of 2012.

"During the quarter we experienced significant success in the reduction of nonperforming loans, which dropped by nearly $10 million to the lowest level we've seen in five years. We continue to keep a watchful eye on credit quality as this measure remains one of our top priorities," Fuller concluded.

Conference Call Details

Heartland will host a conference call for investors at 5:00 p.m. EDT today. To participate, dial 877-407-0782 at least five minutes before start time. To listen to the live webcast, log on to www.htlf.comat least 15 minutes before start time. If you are unable to participate on the call, a replay will be available until April 28, 2014, by logging on to www.htlf.com.

About Heartland Financial USA, Inc.

Heartland Financial USA, Inc. is a $4.9 billion diversified financial services company providing banking, mortgage, wealth management, investment, insurance and consumer finance services to individuals and businesses. Heartland currently has 67 banking locations in 46 communities in Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, New Mexico, Arizona, Montana, Colorado and Minnesota and loan production offices in California, Nevada, Wyoming, Idaho and North Dakota. Additional information about Heartland Financial USA, Inc. is available at www.htlf.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

This release, and future oral and written statements of Heartland and its management, may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 about Heartland's financial condition, results of operations, plans, objectives, future performance and business. Although these forward-looking statements are based upon the beliefs, expectations and assumptions of Heartland's management, there are a number of factors, many of which are beyond the ability of management to control or predict, that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in its forward-looking statements. These factors, which are detailed in the risk factors included in Heartland's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, include, among others: (i) the strength of the local and national economy; (ii) the economic impact of past and any future terrorist threats and attacks and any acts of war, (iii) changes in state and federal laws, regulations and governmental policies concerning the Company's general business; (iv) changes in interest rates and prepayment rates of the Company's assets; (v) increased competition in the financial services sector and the inability to attract new customers; (vi) changes in technology and the ability to develop and maintain secure and reliable electronic systems; (vii) the potential impact of acquisitions, (viii) the loss of key executives or employees; (ix) changes in consumer spending; (x) unexpected outcomes of existing or new litigation involving the Company; and (xii) changes in accounting policies and practices. All statements in this release, including forward-looking statements, speak only as of the date they are made, and Heartland undertakes no obligation to update any statement in light of new information or future events.

 
HEARTLAND FINANCIAL USA, INC.
CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS (Unaudited)
DOLLARS IN THOUSANDS, EXCEPT PER SHARE DATA
  For the Quarter Ended
March 31,
   2013  2012
Interest Income  
Interest and fees on loans and leases$39,827$38,399
Interest on securities:
Taxable4,6597,572
Nontaxable3,1982,271
Interest on federal funds sold
Interest on deposits in other financial institutions 4   
Total Interest Income 47,688  48,242 
Interest Expense
Interest on deposits5,0765,775
Interest on short-term borrowings148213
Interest on other borrowings 3,797  4,061 
Total Interest Expense 9,021  10,049 
Net Interest Income38,66738,193
Provision for loan and lease losses 637  2,354 
Net Interest Income After Provision for Loan and Lease Losses 38,030  35,839 
Noninterest Income
Service charges and fees4,0083,584
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