Community West earnings nearly double in first quarter
Community West Bancshares saw its net income rise by almost 90% year-over-year as it decreased its provision for loan losses and increases its dividends.
The Goleta-based parent company of Community West Bank released its first quarter earnings on May 3, including $3 million in net income for the quarter, or 35 cents per diluted share. That was up from $1.6 million, or 19 cents per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2020.
The bank attributed the higher net income to increased deposit growth and loan origination, which it also credited as the reason it increased the dividends it pays out.
“We continue to generate profitable operations, which sustains our ability to increase dividends,” Community West CEO Martin Plourd said in a news release. “We believe the increase was warranted as evidenced by our last three quarters performance. Our focus in 2021 remains on deploying excess liquidity through increased lending activity, while maintaining our strong net interest margin, lowering overall expenses and managing asset quality.”
Community West Bancshares reduced its provision for loan losses from $392,000 in the first quarter of 2020 to $173,000 in the first quarter of 2021, a decrease of more than 55%. It had originated $94.5 million in federal Paycheck Protection Program loans as of March 31, $22.8 million of which have already been forgiven. Total demand deposits rose from $408 million on March 31, 2020 to $637.1 million a year later, an increase of 56.2%.
The company’s board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of 7 cents per common share, which will be paid on May 31 to common shareholders on record as of May 10.