PASADENA – East West Bancorp, Inc. (“East West”) (Nasdaq: EWBC), parent company of East West Bank, the financial bridge between the United States and Greater China, today reported financial results for the first quarter of 2014. For the first quarter of 2014, net income was $76.7 million or $0.54 per diluted share. First quarter earnings included integration and merger expenses of $10.6 million pretax, or $0.04 per diluted share associated with the acquisition of MetroCorp Bancshares, Inc. (“MetroCorp”) which was completed on January 17, 2014.
“East West has started off 2014 with healthy growth and solid profitability. For the first quarter, East West recorded earnings of $76.7 million or $0.54 per share, a $0.04 or 8% increase in earnings per share from the prior year period,” stated Dominic Ng, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of East West. “This growth in profitability and earnings per share has been achieved while we also generated strong return on asset and return on equity ratios. For the first quarter 2014, East West achieved a return on average assets of 1.18%, and a return on average equity of 12.05%, both higher than many peers in the banking industry.”
Ng continued, “Quarter to date, total loans increased by 10% or $1.8 billion to a record $19.9 billion and total deposits increased 12% or $2.4 billion to a record $22.8 billion. This balance sheet increase during the first quarter of 2014 was largely driven by our acquisition of MetroCorp, which expands East West’s presence in the Houston and Dallas markets and strengthens our footprint in California. With the acquisition of MetroCorp, we have opportunities to grow in attractive markets and to provide our new customers with our full bridge banking capabilities between the U.S. and China. The integration process is progressing smoothly and the full conversion of all MetroCorp systems is scheduled for completion later this year in June.”
“The strong financial performance for the first quarter was driven by solid loan growth, a 13% increase in the adjusted net interest income from the prior year period, and an increase in the adjusted net interest margin from the prior quarter to 3.45%. This revenue growth was achieved while also maintaining strong credit quality and expense control, with an efficiency ratio of 43.36% for the first quarter,” continued Ng.
“As the financial bridge between the East and the West, we see increasing business opportunities both in the U.S. and in Greater China. We are building lines of business, making investments in people and infrastructure and strengthening our balance sheet so that we are well positioned to capitalize on these growth opportunities to increase shareholder return for 2014 and for many years to come,” concluded Ng.
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