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Mississippi banks out-perform national average in Bauer ratings

cat_5_4starapr10Mississippi’s banks dipped slightly in the second quarter from the same quarter last year in the percentage of banks making independent rating firm Bauer Financial’s list of “Recommended” banks but still outpaced the national average by more than 7 percentage points.

Bauer reports that 77.7 percent of bank in the Magnolia State made the “Recommended” list for 2Q. In the second quarter of 2012, Mississippi banks joined banks in 23 other states as having at least 80 percent of their banks rated as “Recommended” by Bauer, a Coral Gables, Fla., banking rating and financial data company.

Nationally, Bauer awarded “Recommended” ratings to 70 percent of the banks surveyed. That’s a noticeable improvement over the same quarter a year, when Bauer limited its “Recommended” rating to 66.6 percent of the nation’s banks.

Bauer’s 2Q survey listed zero percent of Mississippi banks in the second quarter as “Troubled & “Problematic,” a designation the rating agency reserves for banks that fail to gain any stars. Bauer awarded only one star to OmniBank of Bay Springs, a designation that falls into the “Problematic” category. The FDIC-regulated bank’s assets fell from $75 million in the first quarter last year to $47.4 million in this year’s second quarter, down $1 million from the first quarter. The bank, which has three locations and 30 employees, had overdue loans and leases of $3.6 million at the close of the second quarter, a $200,000 improvement from the first quarter.

Only two Mississippi banks that received Five Star designations as “Superior” in the first quarter failed to gain the same designation in the second. Those banks were Jackson’s Trustmark and Greenwood’s Bank of Commerce. Both banks received four stars, a designation that carries a recommendation of “Excellent.”

New to the five-star list in the second quarter are Lucedale’s Century Bank, Jackson’s First Commercial Bank and Belzoni’s Guaranty Bank & Trust.

Mississippi market leader Regions Bank received a 3 ½ star ranking, as did regional heavyweight BancorpSouth of Tupelo. Another Tupelo-based regional, Renasant, garnered four stars just ahead of completion of its acquisition of Farmers and Merchants Bank, a Kosciusko-based institution with 38 locations.

Brandon’s BankPlus, a large Mississippi banking operation with 65 locations, received four stars.

Gulport’s Hancock Bank, a multi-state institution as well, remained in the “Superior” category by keeping the five stars awarded in the first quarter.

Regional bank Cadence, now headquartered in Birmingham after moving form Starkville, kept the five stars it won in the first quarter.

Bauer weighs each bank’s level of tier one risk-based capital and total risk-based capital ratio, as well as any profitability-and-loss trend. It also evaluates the level of delinquent loans, charge-offs and repossessed assets, the market versus book value of the investment portfolio, regulatory supervisory agreements, the community reinvestment rating (CRA), historical data and liquidity.



Here is the second quarter list of Mississippi’s five-star banks:

» Bank of Anguilla: Anguilla,

» Bank of Benoit: Benoit;

» Bank of Bolivar County: Shelby;

» Bank of Brookhaven: Brookhaven;

» Bank of Forest: Forest;

» Bank of Jones County: Laurel;

» Bank of Morton: Morton;

» Bank of Walnut Grove: Walnut Grove;

» Bank of Yazoo City: Yazoo City;

» BankFirst Financial Services: Macon;

» Century Bank: Lucedale;

» Charter Bank: Biloxi;

» Citizens Bank: Byhalia;

» Citizens Bank: Columbia;

» Cleveland State Bank: Cleveland;

» Commerce National Bank: Corinth;

» Covington County Bank: Collins;

» Farmers and Merchants Bank: Baldwyn;

» First American National Bank: Iuka;

» First Bank: McComb;

» First Commercial Bank: Jackson

» First Federal Savings and Loan: Aberdeen;

» First Federal Savings and Loan: Pascagoula;

» First National Bank of Clarksdale: Clarksdale;

» First National Bank of Oxford: Oxford;

» First National Bank of Pontotoc: Pontotoc;

» First Southern Bank: Columbia;

» First State Bank: Waynesboro;

» Great Southern National Bank: Meridian;

» Guaranty Bank: Belzoni;

» Hancock Bank: Gulfport;

» Jefferson Bank: Fayette;

» Magnolia State Bank: Bay Springs;

» Merchants and Marine Bank: Pascagoula;

» Newton County Bank: Newton;

» Oxford University Bank: Oxford;

» Peoples Bank: Ripley;

» Peoples Bank and Trust: North Carrollton;

» Planters Bank and Trust: Indianola;

» Richton Bank and Trust: Richton;

» Sycamore Bank: Senatobia;

» Tallahatchie County Bank: Charleston;

» United Mississippi Bank: Natchez.



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