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Angola-based Evans Bancorp used a growing revenue line from its insurance business to overcome stagnant bank income and post a modest profit increase during the third quarter.

The parent company of Evans National Bank reported net income of $725,271, a 4.3 percent increase from $694,727 during the third quarter of 2000. The earnings of 33 cents per share were up a penny from 32 cents last year.

The company's revenue growth was fueled by property and casualty insurance sales at the seven offices of its subsidiary M&W Agency. Revenue from fee-based services almost doubled from $569,628 during the third quarter of 2000 to $1.1 million during the recently completed quarter.

Interest income from loans at the bank's seven branches was stagnant because of the softening economy. The bank set aside $139,000 to prepare for potential loan losses during the quarter, a provision which more than doubled from $60,000 during the same period last year.

The higher loan loss provisions devoured a slight increase in net interest income. The bank's interest income, including loan loss provisions, remained flat on a year-over-year basis at $2.2 million.

"Overall, we are pleased that the company has continued to increase net income in spite of a challenging interest rate environment," said Evans Bancorp president James Tilley.

The company's earnings on a cash basis, which do not reflect charges to account for the M&W Agency acquisition in October 2000, rose 11.9 percent to $811,000.

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