Banks End 2014 With Solid Gains

Banks End 2014 With Solid Gains

March 10, 2015: BAUERFINANCIAL, Inc., the nation’s bank rating firm, has just released its first star-rating updates of 2015 (based on December 31, 2014 financial data) and the results are mostly positive. While the banking industry continues its consolidation (down 4.44% from a year ago) loans and leases are up 5.3% over the year. That’s the highest year-over-year growth since mid-2008. Over 61% of banks reported year-over-year growth in quarterly earnings and, for the first time since 2005, fewer than 10% were unprofitable in the fourth quarter.

That, in addition to a number of other measures, resulted in the highest percentage of Recommended Banks nationwide (5-Stars or 4-Stars) since the fourth quarter of 2006. Almost all states showed improvement and recommended banks now account for over 90% of the banks headquartered in nine states. They are: Alaska and New Hampshire (100%); Iowa (94%); Texas (93.7%); Nebraska (93.5%); South Dakota (93.1%); Massachusetts (92.4%); Louisiana (91.3%); and North Dakota (90.5%).

Troubled and Problematic Banks (rated 2-Stars or below) now account for 4.7% of the industry as a whole. Georgia still has the highest with 21.1% of its banks on that list followed by South Carolina with 16.9%. If your bank is headquartered in Alaska, DC, Idaho, Louisiana, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Vermont or Wyoming, than it is not on the Troubled and Problematic Report. Otherwise, you’ll want to double check.

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