December 5, 2022
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Bank of the Sierra reports earnings growth for Q4 and full year of 2021

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Bank of the Sierra, a Central Valley-based bank with nine branches in the tri-county region, reported record earnings for 2021, with net income up more than 20% from the previous year.

Sierra Bancorp is the parent company of Bank of the Sierra and is headquartered in Porterville, in Tulare County. It reported net income of $43 million, or $2.80 per diluted share, for the full 2021 calendar year, compared with $35.4 million, or $2.32 per diluted share, for 2020, according to its Jan. 24 earnings release. The bank said the “most significant line-item changes” were a $12.2 million drop in the provision for loan and lease losses, as well as an increase of $4.2 million, or 4%, in net interest income.

Sierra Bancorp reported net income of $9.6 million, or 63 cents per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2021. That’s an increase compared with its reported net income of $9 million, or 58 cents per diluted share, in the same quarter of 2020.

The bank said it experienced a $1.2 million negative provision for loan and lease losses in the fourth quarter of 2021, and “lower salary and benefit costs partially offset by an increase in litigation expense and related legal reserves.”

Gross loan balances decreased more than $473 million over the course of 2021, primarily because of a $206.5 million decline in mortgage warehouse line utilization, an $87.6 million decline in pandemic-related federal Paycheck Protection Program loans mostly due to forgiveness of loans, and a net decrease of more than $155 million in real estate secured loans, primarily from construction and other commercial real estate loans, according to Sierra Bancorp’s earnings release.

“Our tireless work is reflected in our fourth quarter results that complete a record-breaking year for income,” Kevin McPhaill, the president and CEO of Sierra Bancorp, said in a news release.