Lakeland Bancorp Announces Third Quarter Results and Share Repurchase Program

OAK RIDGE, N.J., Oct. 24, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Lakeland Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: LBAI) (the “Company”), the parent company of Lakeland Bank (“Lakeland”), reported net income of $18.9 million and earnings per diluted share (“EPS”) of $0.37 for the three months ended September 30, 2019 compared to net income of $16.8 million and diluted EPS of $0.35 for the third quarter of 2018. For the third quarter of 2019, annualized return on average assets was 1.17%, annualized return on average common equity was 10.61% and annualized return on average tangible common equity was 13.74%.
For the nine months ended September 30, 2019, the Company reported net income of $52.0 million, a 9% increase compared to $47.9 million for the same period in 2018. For the nine months ended 2019, the Company reported diluted EPS of $1.02, compared to diluted EPS of $0.99 for the first nine months of 2018. Excluding merger-related expenses pertaining to the Company’s January 2019 acquisition of Highlands Bancorp, Inc. (“Highlands”) of $2.4 million, tax-effected, net income for the nine months ended September 30, 2019 was $54.3 million, or $1.06 per diluted share. For the first nine months of 2019, annualized return on average assets was 1.11%, annualized return on average common equity was 10.07%, and annualized return on average tangible common equity was 13.11%. Excluding merger-related expenses these ratios were 1.16%, 10.53% and 13.70%, respectively.Thomas Shara, Lakeland Bancorp’s President and CEO commented, “We are pleased once again to report record quarterly earnings in spite of a volatile interest rate environment. Earlier today, the Company announced a new share repurchase program of 5% of the Company’s outstanding common stock. The share repurchase program allows us the flexibility to utilize another effective capital management tool.”Net Interest Margin and Net Interest IncomeNet interest margin for the third quarter of 2019 of 3.25% decreased seven basis points from the third quarter of 2018 and decreased fourteen basis points from the second quarter of 2019. The decrease in net interest margin compared to the third quarter of 2018 was due primarily to an increase in the cost of interest bearing liabilities, while the decrease compared to the second quarter of 2019 was due primarily to a decrease in the yield on earning assets. Net interest margin for the first nine months of 2019 of 3.35% compared to 3.38% for the same period in 2018.The yield on interest-earning assets for the third quarter of 2019 was 4.32% compared to 4.14% for the third quarter of 2018 and 4.46% for the second quarter of 2019. The yield on interest-earning assets for the first nine months of 2019 was 4.41% compared to 4.09% during the same period in 2018. The current quarter and year-to-date increase in yield on interest-earning assets, when compared to the prior year periods, was a result of originating higher yielding loans, additional accretion income on loans resulting from the Highlands acquisition and higher investment securities yields. The decrease in yield on interest-earning assets compared to the second quarter of 2019 was due primarily to a reduction in yield on loans due to decreases in prime rate in the third quarter, as well as an increase in lower yielding average interest-earning cash.The cost of interest-bearing liabilities for the third quarter of 2019 was 1.41% compared to 1.08% for the third quarter of 2018 and 1.42% for the second quarter of 2019. The cost of interest-bearing liabilities for the first nine months of 2019 was 1.39% compared to 0.94% during the same period in 2018. The cost of interest-bearing transaction accounts, time deposits and borrowings have increased since 2018 largely driven by competitive pressures and higher market interest rates.Net interest income increased to $48.7 million for the third quarter of 2019 compared to $43.6 million for the third quarter of 2018, due primarily to the growth of interest-earning assets and increases in loan yields, partially offset by an increase in average interest-bearing liabilities and higher interest rates on interest-bearing liabilities. Net interest income for the first nine months of 2019 was $146.5 million, as compared to $129.4 million for the same period in 2018.Noninterest IncomeNoninterest income increased $1.1 million to $6.7 million for the third quarter of 2019 from $5.6 million for the third quarter of 2018. Service charges on deposit accounts increased $237,000 compared to the third quarter of 2018 due primarily to deposit growth. Commissions and fees increased $131,000 compared to the third quarter of 2018 due primarily to an increase in investment services income, while gains on equity securities of $72,000 compared favorably to losses of $439,000 recorded during the third quarter of 2018. Income on bank owned life insurance decreased $436,000 due primarily to a death benefit received during the third quarter of 2018. Other income increased $616,000 compared to the third quarter of 2018 due primarily to gains resulting from payoffs of purchased credit impaired loans and an increase in swap income during the third quarter of 2019, partially offset by $315,000 in branch write-downs.For the first nine months of 2019, noninterest income totaled $18.8 million compared to $16.7 million for the same period in 2018 as the Company recorded a $525,000 gain on equity securities in the first nine months of 2019 compared to losses of $384,000 during the same period in 2018. In addition, commissions and fees increased $586,000 compared to the first nine months of 2018 due primarily to an increase in investment services income, while service charges on deposit accounts increased $409,000 due primarily to deposit growth. Other income increased $464,000 compared to the first nine months of 2018 due primarily to the same reasons discussed above in the quarterly comparison.Noninterest ExpenseNoninterest expense totaled $29.6 million for the third quarter of 2019 and increased $1.8 million compared to the third quarter of 2018 due primarily to salary and employee benefit expense which increased $1.7 million as a result of staff additions from the Highlands merger, normal merit increases and higher benefit costs. Additionally, net occupancy expense increased $451,000 compared to the third quarter of 2018 due primarily to the acceleration of rental expense on a leased branch slated to close totaling $295,000. In the third quarter of 2019, $420,000 in previously recorded FDIC expense was reversed due to assessment credits from the FDIC and no third quarter 2019 accrual was made, resulting from the insurance fund reserve ratio exceeding the required level. The FDIC expense reversal resulted in a favorable variance of $820,000 compared to the same period in 2018.For the first nine months of 2019, noninterest expense totaled $95.2 million compared to $82.5 million for the same period in 2018. Excluding merger-related expenses of $3.2 million, noninterest expense increased $9.6 million compared to the first nine months of 2018 primarily as a result of additional salary and benefit expenses , as well as Highlands expenses from the merger date in January 2019 through the system conversion date in April and increased data processing expenses. Net occupancy increased $693,000 during the first nine months of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018 due primarily to the addition of Highlands branches as well as the acceleration of rental expense mentioned above. FDIC insurance expense decreased $794,000 compared to the first nine months of 2018 due to the credits discussed above.Income Tax ExpenseThe effective tax rate for the third quarter of 2019 was 25.3% compared to 17.9% for the third quarter of 2018, as a result of a technical bulletin issued by the New Jersey Division of Taxation during the second quarter 2019, which resulted in increasing our estimated effective tax rate for 2019 to 24.7%.Financial ConditionAt September 30, 2019, total assets were $6.49 billion, an increase of $686.4 million, including $496.5 million from the Highlands acquisition compared to December 31, 2018. For the nine months ended September 30, 2019, total loans grew $466.7 million, including $425.0 million from Highlands, to $4.92 billion and investment securities increased $83.6 million, including $24.5 million from Highlands, to $905.1 million. On the funding side, total deposits increased $589.9 million, including $409.6 million from Highlands, to $5.21 billion, while borrowings decreased $36.7 million to $483.4 million. At September 30, 2019, total loans as a percent of total deposits was 94.5%.Asset QualityAt September 30, 2019, non-performing assets increased to $16.9 million, 0.26% of total assets, compared to $13.0 million, 0.22% of total assets, at December 31, 2018. Non-accrual loans as a percent of total loans increased to 0.32% at September 30, 2019 compared to 0.27% at December 31, 2018. The allowance for loan losses increased to $38.7 million, 0.78% of total loans, at September 30, 2019, compared to $37.7 million, 0.84% of total loans, at December 31, 2018. The Company’s allowance for loan losses excluding acquired loans would be 0.91%. In the third quarter of 2019, the Company had net charge-offs of $543,000, or 0.04%, of average loans, annualized, compared to $357,000, or 0.03%, for the same period in 2018. Provision for loan losses for the third quarter of 2019 was $536,000 compared to provision for loan losses of $1.0 million in the third quarter of 2018.CapitalAt September 30, 2019, stockholders’ equity was $713.2 million compared to $623.7 million at December 31, 2018, a 14% increase. Lakeland Bank remains above FDIC “well capitalized” standards, with a Tier 1 leverage ratio of 9.34% at September 30, 2019. The book value per common share and tangible book value per common share increased 10% and 11% to $14.13 and $10.94, respectively, compared to $12.79 and $9.88 at September 30, 2018. On October 22, 2019, the Company declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.125 per share to be paid on November 15, 2019, to shareholders of record as of November 4, 2019.Under the Share Repurchase Program announced today, the Company may repurchase up to 2,524,458 shares of its common stock, or approximately 5% of its outstanding shares of common stock at September 30, 2019. Repurchases may be made from time to time through a combination of open market and privately negotiated repurchases. The specific timing, price and quantity of repurchases will be at the discretion of the Company and will depend on a variety of factors, including general market conditions, the trading price of the common stock, legal and contractual requirements and the Company’s financial performance. The repurchase program does not obligate the Company to repurchase any shares.Forward-Looking StatementsThe information disclosed in this document includes various forward-looking statements that are made in reliance upon the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words “anticipates”, “projects”, “intends”, “estimates”, “expects”, “believes”, “plans”, “may”, “will”, “should”, “could”, and other similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. The Company cautions that these forward-looking statements are necessarily speculative and speak only as of the date made, and are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties, all of which may change over time. Actual results could differ materially from such forward-looking statements. The following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ materially and adversely from such forward-looking statements: changes in the financial services industry and the U.S. and global capital markets, changes in economic conditions nationally, regionally and in the Company’s markets, the nature and timing of actions of the Federal Reserve Board and other regulators, the nature and timing of legislation and regulation affecting the financial services industry, government intervention in the U.S. financial system, changes in federal and state tax laws, changes in levels of market interest rates, pricing pressures on loan and deposit products, credit risks of the Company’s lending and leasing activities, successful implementation, deployment and upgrades of new and existing technology, systems, services and products, customers’ acceptance of the Company’s products and services, competition and failure to realize anticipated efficiencies and synergies from the merger of Highlands Bancorp, Inc. into Lakeland Bancorp and the merger of Highlands State Bank into Lakeland Bank. Any statements made by the Company that are not historical facts should be considered to be forward-looking statements. The Company is not obligated to update and does not undertake to update any of its forward-looking statements made herein.Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial MeasuresReported amounts are presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“GAAP”). This press release also contains certain supplemental non-GAAP information that the Company’s management uses in its analysis of the Company’s financial results. Specifically, the Company provides measures based on what it believes are its operating earnings on a consistent basis, and excludes material non-routine operating items which affect the GAAP reporting of results of operations. The Company’s management believes that providing this information to analysts and investors allows them to better understand and evaluate the Company’s core financial results for the periods in question.The Company also provides measurements and ratios based on tangible equity and tangible assets. These measures are utilized by regulators and market analysts to evaluate a company’s financial condition and, therefore, the Company’s management believes that such information is useful to investors.The Company also uses an efficiency ratio that is a non-GAAP financial measure. The ratio that the Company uses excludes amortization of core deposit intangibles, provision for unfunded lending commitments and, where applicable, long-term debt prepayment fees and merger-related expenses. Income for the non-GAAP ratio is increased by the favorable effect of tax-exempt income and excludes gains and losses from the sale of investment securities and gain on debt extinguishment, which can vary from period to period. The Company uses this ratio because it believes the ratio provides a relevant measure to compare the operating performance period to period.These disclosures should not be viewed as a substitute for financial results determined in accordance with GAAP, nor are they necessarily comparable to non-GAAP performance measures which may be presented by other companies. See accompanying non-GAAP tables.About LakelandLakeland Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBAI) has approximately $6.49 billion in total assets. Lakeland Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lakeland Bancorp, Inc., operates 53 branch offices throughout Bergen, Essex, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, and Union counties in New Jersey including one branch in Highland Mills, New York; five New Jersey regional commercial lending centers in Bernardsville, Jackson, Montville, Teaneck and Waldwick; and one New York commercial lending center to serve the Hudson Valley region. Lakeland also has a commercial loan production office serving Middlesex and Monmouth counties in New Jersey. Lakeland Bank offers an extensive suite of financial products and services for businesses and consumers. Visit LakelandBank.com for more information.Thomas J. Shara
President & CEO
Thomas F. Splaine
EVP & CFO
973-697-2000








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