First Merchants Corporation Announces Third Quarter 2019 Results With the Addition of Monroe Bank and Trust

MUNCIE, Ind., Oct. 24, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ – FRME) has reported third quarter 2019 net income of $36.8 million compared to $41.1 million during the same period in 2018.  Earnings per share for the period totaled $.71 per share compared to third quarter 2018 results of $.83 per share.  Included in the third quarter results are $11.2 million, or $.17 per share, of one-time charges related to the closing of our acquisition of Monroe Bank & Trust on September 1, 2019.
Total assets equaled $12.3 billion as of quarter-end and loans totaled $8.3 billion.  The Corporation’s loan portfolio increased by $1.2 billion, or 17.1 percent, during the past twelve months.  Investments increased $864 million, or 53.2 percent, during the same period and now total $2.5 billion.  The acquisition of Monroe Bank & Trust accounted for $731 million of the increase in loans.  Total deposits equaled $9.8 billion as of quarter-end and increased by $2.1 billion, or 27.9 percent, since September 30, 2018.  Of the increase, Monroe Bank & Trust accounted for $1.1 billion.The Corporation’s loan to deposit ratio now totals 85.1 percent and loan to asset ratio totals 67.4 percent.  Additionally, the Corporation’s total risk-based capital ratio equaled 14.37 percent, common equity tier 1 capital ratio equaled 12.14 percent, and the tangible common equity ratio totaled 9.95 percent.Michael C. Rechin, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, “First Merchants posted strong financial results as our local economies continue to flourish and our clients look to our bank for growth solutions.  The signature event for the quarter was the legal closing of the Monroe Bank & Trust transaction.  The merger extends our franchise with a community bank that enjoys a dominant market share position.  Our plan to operationally integrate Monroe Bank & Trust into First Merchants next month will accelerate our marketplace momentum into 2020 to include a reduction in our overall funding costs.”Net-interest income for the quarter totaled $88.9 million, an increase of $2.4 million from third quarter 2018, even as net-interest margin declined by 43 basis points totaling 3.62 percent.  Yields on earning assets totaled 4.77 percent, a decline of 11 basis points of which nearly half was due to lower fair value accretion. The cost of supporting liabilities increased by 32 basis points and totaled 1.15 percent.Non-interest income totaled $22.1 million for the quarter, a $2.6 million, or 13.3 percent increase from the third quarter of 2018. Customer specific line items accounted for $3.1 million of the increase, with derivative hedge income accounting for $909,000 of the growth.  Non-interest expense totaled $67.4 million up from the 2018 total of $55 million.  Of the $12.4 million increase from the third quarter of 2018, merger related expenses accounted for $11.2 million.The Corporation’s provision expense for the quarter totaled $600,000 and net charge-offs were $1.3 million.  The allowance for loan losses reached $80.6 million as of September 30, 2019, up from $78.4 million as of September 30, 2018.  Non-accrual loans declined to $22.7 million as of quarter-end and the allowance is .97 percent of total loans and 1.16 percent of non-purchased loans.CONFERENCE CALLFirst Merchants Corporation will conduct a third quarter earnings conference call and web cast at 2:30 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, October 24, 2019.To participate, dial (Toll Free) 877-507-0578 and reference First Merchants Corporation’s third quarter earnings release. International callers please call +1 412-317-1073.  A replay of the call will be available until November 24, 2019. To access a replay of the call, US participants should dial (Toll Free) 877-344-7529, Canada participants should dial 855-669-9658, or for International participants, dial +1 412-317-0088. The replay access code is 10134821.In order to view the web cast and presentation slides, please go to http://services.choruscall.com/links/frme191024.html during the time of the call.  A replay of the web cast will be available until October 24, 2020.Detailed financial results are reported on the attached pages.About First Merchants CorporationFirst Merchants Corporation is a financial holding company headquartered in Muncie, Indiana. The Corporation has one full-service bank charter, First Merchants Bank.  The Bank also operates as First Merchants Private Wealth Advisors (as a division of First Merchants Bank).First Merchants Corporation’s common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market System under the symbol FRME. Quotations are carried in daily newspapers and can be found on the company’s Internet web page (http://www.firstmerchants.com).FIRST MERCHANTS and the Shield Logo are federally registered trademarks of First Merchants Corporation.Forward-Looking StatementsThis release contains forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe-harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements can often, but not always, be identified by the use of words like “believe”, “continue”, “pattern”, “estimate”, “project”, “intend”, “anticipate”, “expect” and similar expressions or future or conditional verbs such as “will”, would”, “should”, “could”, “might”, “can”, “may”, or similar expressions. These statements include statements of First Merchants’ goals, intentions and expectations; statements regarding the First Merchants’ business plan and growth strategies; statements regarding the asset quality of First Merchants’ loan and investment portfolios; and estimates of First Merchants’ risks and future costs and benefits. These forward-looking statements are subject to significant risks, assumptions and uncertainties that may cause results to differ materially from those set forth in forward-looking statements, including, among other things: possible changes in monetary and fiscal policies, and laws and regulations; the effects of easing restrictions on participants in the financial services industry; the cost and other effects of legal and administrative cases; possible changes in the credit worthiness of customers and the possible impairment of collectability of loans; fluctuations in market rates of interest; competitive factors in the banking industry; changes in the banking legislation or regulatory requirements of federal and state agencies applicable to bank holding companies and banks like First Merchants’ affiliate bank; continued availability of earnings and excess capital sufficient for the lawful and prudent declaration of dividends; changes in market, economic, operational, liquidity, credit and interest rate risks associated with the First Merchants’ business; and other risks and factors identified in each of First Merchants’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. First Merchants does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, relating to the matters discussed in this press release. In addition, First Merchants’ past results of operations do not necessarily indicate its anticipated future results.










For more information, contact:
Nicole M. Weaver, Vice President and Director of Corporate Administration
765-521-7619
http://www.firstmerchants.com
SOURCE: First Merchants Corporation, Muncie, Indiana 

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