Columbia Banking Q4 income drops

Columbia Banking System Inc. said fourth-quarter income attributable to shareholders fell to $447,000, or 2 cents a share, from $1.3 million, or 7 cents a share a year earlier. For fiscal 2009, the Tacoma-based holding company (NASDAQ: COLB) of Columbia Bank reported a loss to shareholders of $8.4 million, or a loss of 38 cents per share, which compares with earnings of $5.5 million, or earnings of 30 cents a share in fiscal 2008. In the latest fiscal year, Columbia reported a $63.5 million provision for loan losses. In the latest quarter, it reported $15 million for loan losses, primarily related to declining real estate values. Shares in Columbia rose more than 4 percent in Thursday trading, rising 82 cents to close at $19.30. On Jan. 22, Columbia Bank acquired Columbia River Bank after the Oregon institution was shuttered by regulators. Do you agree with the U.S. [Read the full article]

Banner Corp. reported a fourth-quarter loss attributable to shareholders of $5.5 million, or a loss of 27 cents per share, which compares with a loss of $79.4 million, or a loss of $4.72 per share a year earlier. For fiscal 2009, the banking company reported a loss attributable to shareholders of $43.4 million, or a loss of $2.33 per share, which compares with a loss of $128.8 million, or a loss of $7.94 per share in fiscal 2008. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters First Call expected a fourth-quarter loss of 67 cents per share and a fiscal 2009 loss of $1.97 per share for the Walla Walla-based holding company (NASDAQ: BANR), which is the parent of Banner Bank and Islanders Bank. Do you agree with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that government may not ban political spending by corporations? © 2010 American City Business Journals, Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. [Read the full article]

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New York Community Bancorp, Inc. (NYSE: NYB – News) (the “Company”) today announced that its chairman, president, and chief executive officer, Joseph R. Ficalora, will participate in the Morgan Stanley U.S. Financials Conference to be held in New York City on Wednesday, February 3, 2010. Mr. Ficalora presentation is scheduled to begin at 9:10 a.m. Eastern Time and will focus on the Company fourth quarter 2009 performance and its business strategies, including its recent acquisition of the deposits and certain assets of AmTrust Bank.

A simultaneous webcast of the presentation, including any questions and answers, will be available at the Company web site, www.myNYCB.com. [Read the full article]

ESB Financial Corporation (NASDAQ: ESBF – News), the parent company of ESB Bank, today announced earnings of $1.00 per diluted share on net income of $12.0 million for the year ended December 31, 2009, which represents an 19.1% increase in net income per diluted share as compared to earnings of $0.84 per diluted share on net income of $10.2 million for the year ended December 31, 2008. The Company return on average assets and average equity were 0.61% and 7.66%, respectively, for the year ended December 31, 2009 and 0.53% and 7.88%, respectively, for the year ended December 31, 2008. [Read the full article]

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