The Bank Slate


Securities sales cut into profit at F&M in Ohio

Farmers & Merchants Bancorp in Archibold, Ohio, reported lower quarterly earnings that reflected higher noninterest expenses and a decision to sell securities at a loss.

The $3.1 billion-asset company said in a press release that its first-quarter net income fell by 20% from a year earlier, to $6.5 million.

Farmers & Merchants said it sold $21.6 million of securities in the first quarter at an $891,000 loss.

Noninterest expenses rose by 26%, to $17 million, and included a $541,000 of charges tied to the conversion of the company’s credit card platform.

“Overall, first quarter profitability was in line with our expectations,” Lars Eller, the company’s president and CEO, said in the release. “We expect the actions taken … will enhance profitability going forward and we remain focused on investing in our growth initiatives, controlling operating expenses and managing our cost of funds.”

Deposits rose by 11.5%, to $2.5 billion. The company said its deposit accounts have an average balance of $25,500 and that only 18% of its deposits were uninsured as of March 31.

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