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Bar Harbor Bankshares Reports Third Quarter Results; Dividend Declared

BAR HARBOR, MAINE / ACCESSWIRE / October 17, 2019 / Bar Harbor Bankshares (NYSE American: BHB or the "Company") reported third quarter 2019 net income of $5.0 million, or $0.32 diluted earnings per share. Net income in the third quarter of 2018 was $9.0 million, or $0.58 diluted earnings per share. The non-GAAP measure of core earnings in the third quarter 2019 totaled $7.3 million, or $0.47 diluted earnings per share, a 15% increase from the prior quarter. Core earnings per share excludes $0.15 per share of non-core charges related to acquisition and restructuring expenses associated with our previously announced strategic review.

THIRD QUARTER FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS (compared to prior quarter):

  • 11% annualized growth in commercial loans
  • 29% annualized growth in non-maturity deposits
  • 10 basis point expansion in net interest margin
  • 3% increase in non-interest income
  • 0.53% non-performing assets to total assets

President and Chief Executive Officer, Curtis C. Simard stated, "We are very excited about the direction our Company is headed. It was a good quarter with improvements across our performance metrics driven by a team focused on the profitability of our operations and initiatives to enhance revenue and create expense efficiencies. We continued to actively manage the balance sheet focusing on core operations and taking advantage of the interest rate environment as we executed a planned deleveraging strategy which resulted in decreasing the securities portfolio by nearly $73.0 million and using the proceeds to pay off higher cost borrowings. This resulted in yields from securities expanding 15 basis points and borrowings costs decreasing 12 basis points compared to the prior quarter. Our commercial team once again delivered another quarter of strong double digit growth across our three state footprint including our loan production office in Portland, Maine, which also contributed to significant customer derivative income. Loan quality continues to be strong with net charge-offs close to zero which is indicative of our disciplined approach to credit quality, risk mitigation, and an effort focused on proven operators with appropriate loan structures. Growth in non-maturity deposits was up during the quarter, 29% on an annualized basis. This is the direct result of the sales culture we've been cultivating over the past year under new leadership. All of these efforts in the quarter resulted in a 6% annualized increase to tangible book value per share."

Mr. Simard further stated, "We completed our strategic review in the third quarter which we announced in the second quarter. This review positions us for improved profitability and judicious deployment of capital, while balancing liquidity and core deposit growth. The results of our strategic review included a branch optimization exercise that evaluated fixed assets, staffing models, and business and operational processes. Towards the end of September we announced our intent to close five branches by year-end and identified other non-branch properties to consolidate across our footprint. In addition we continue to consolidate processes within our wealth management businesses to increase efficiency while improving customer service. These strategic decisions along with the elimination of other redundancies and implemented efficiencies are expected to be accretive to earnings in the first quarter of 2020 thereby allowing a platform for profitable growth with positive operating leverage."

Mr. Simard further stated, "We are on track to close our branch acquisition this month. Experienced teams from both sides have been working together to ensure a smooth transition of customer accounts and systems. We are excited to welcome our new customers and colleagues as we build our central Maine franchise. While the acquisition will close mid quarter, we do expect it will be accretive for the period."

Mr. Simard concluded, "From every angle, our teams have embraced our culture and think differently about how we do business, how to serve our customers and how to build and execute strategy. I'm proud of the dedication they've shown throughout this process. Just as we have grown as an organization, so too has our brand. Good things happen when we work together with our customers both internally and externally. In summary, the benefits from our current activities along with future initiatives are expected to enhance the intrinsic value of our stock."

DIVIDEND DECLARED

The Board of Directors voted to declare a cash dividend of $0.22 per share to shareholders of record at the close of business on November 13, 2019, payable on December 13, 2019. This dividend equates to a 3.5% annualized yield based on the $24.93 closing price of the Company's common stock at the end of the third quarter of 2019.

FINANCIAL CONDITION

Total assets decreased in the third quarter by $75.2 million to $3.6 billion primarily due to the balance sheet deleveraging strategy which decreased the security portfolio by $72.9 million as a result of opportunistic sales and natural run-off. The proceeds were used to pay off higher cost wholesale borrowings. Loans in the third quarter 2019 remained flat at $2.6 billion. The strong double digit growth in commercial loans was offset by a decrease in residential loans as a strategic effort was made to shift more production through the secondary market platform given the overall rate environment and initiatives around profitability. Non-maturity deposit balances increased by $106.1 million or 29% annualized. This growth was led by demand deposit and money market accounts due to new accounts, seasonally high balances, and shifts between time deposits to money market accounts. Growth in demand accounts was 19% from the same quarter 2018. The loan to deposit ratio improved, decreasing to 103% in the third quarter 2019 compared to 104% in prior quarter.

The third quarter 2019 allowance for loan losses to total loans ratio increased to 0.60% from 0.57% in the previous quarter with a coverage ratio to non-accruing loans of 92%. Non-accruing loans increased $724 thousand due primarily to two commercial real estate relationships which were identified through the Bank's specific reserve process and carry adequate reserves to cover the collateral shortfall. The ratio of non-accruing loans to total loans of 0.65% in the third quarter 2019 was relatively flat compared with the prior quarter of 0.62%.

The Company's book value per share was $25.37 at the end of the third quarter 2019 compared to $25.13 the end of the second quarter 2019, representing a 4% annualized growth rate. Tangible book value per share (non-GAAP measure) was $18.49 at the end of the third quarter 2019 compared to $18.23 at the end of the second quarter 2019, representing a 6% annualized growth rate. In the third quarter, lower long-term interest rates continued to have a positive impact on the fair value adjustment in the securities portfolio. The unrealized gains on securities available for sale net of tax was $8.0 million in the third quarter 2019 compared to unrealized gains of $5.5 million in the second quarter 2019.

RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Net income in the third quarter 2019 was $5.0 million, or $0.32 per share, compared to $9.0 million, or $0.58 per share, in the same quarter of 2018. The non-GAAP measure of core earnings in the third quarter 2019 was $7.3 million or $0.47 per share, up 15% from the previous quarter. Interest and dividend income was up 6% to $34.3 million as quarterly yields on earning assets expanded 17 basis points on a year-over-year basis and 4 basis points from the prior quarter to 4.17%. Net interest margin in the third quarter 2019 decreased to 2.75% from 2.81% in the same period of 2018 reflecting the fluctuations in short-term interest rates over the last year. On a quarter-over-quarter basis, net interest margin expanded in the third quarter 2019 by 10 basis points to 2.75% due to various balance sheet deleveraging strategies including a decrease of $72.9 million in securities yielding an average of 2.1% and using the proceeds to pay-off wholesale borrowings with an average cost of 2.4%, and adjusting our mortgage strategy to shift more production through the secondary market platform versus portfolio.

The third quarter 2019 provision for loan losses increased to $893 thousand from $643 thousand in the same quarter 2018, which is reflective of the increased commercial loan growth over the last two quarters. The net charged-off loans to average loans ratio is at 0.02% annualized rate for the third quarter 2019 compared to 0.04% in the same quarter 2018. Asset quality continues to be strong with non-accruing loans to total loans at 0.65% in the third quarter 2019, down from 0.88% in the same quarter of 2018.

Non-interest income in the third quarter 2019 increased 7% to $7.6 million from $7.1 million in the same quarter in 2018. The increase was driven by $828 thousand increase in customer derivative income associated with the commercial loan growth and $157 thousand net gain on sales of securities associated with the balance sheet deleverage strategy after considering the $685 thousand gain recorded in the third quarter of 2018 associated with sale of Visa B shares.

Non-interest expense increased to $23.4 million in the third quarter 2019 from $17.9 million in the prior year in part as a result of higher salaries and benefits attributable to previously announced strategic hires and an increase in professional service fees. Acquisition, restructuring, and other expense activity in 2019 totaled $3.0 million and are considered non-core as they do not represent reoccurring costs.

BACKGROUND

Bar Harbor Bankshares (NYSE American: BHB) is the parent company of its wholly-owned subsidiary, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust. Founded in 1887, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust is a true community bank serving the financial needs of its clients for over 130 years. Bar Harbor provides full-service community banking with office locations in all three Northern New England states of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. For more information, visit www.barharbor.bank.

FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS

Certain statements under the heading "THIRD QUARTER FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS" contained in this document that are not historical facts may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended ("Securities Act"), and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended ("Exchange Act"), and are intended to be covered by the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this earnings release the words "may," "will," "should," "could," "would," "plan," "potential," "estimate," "project," "believe," "intend," "anticipate," "expect," "target" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, but these terms are not the exclusive means of identifying forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to significant risks, assumptions and uncertainties, including among other things, changes in general economic and business conditions, increased competitive pressures, changes in the interest rate environment, legislative and regulatory change, changes in the financial markets, and other risks and uncertainties disclosed from time to time in documents that the Company files with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including but not limited to those discussed in the section titled "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018. Because of these and other uncertainties, the Company's actual results, performance or achievements, or industry results, may be materially different from the results indicated by these forward-looking statements. In addition, the Company's past results of operations do not necessarily indicate future results. You should not place undue reliance on any of the forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the dates on which they were made. The Company is not undertaking an obligation to update forward-looking statements, even though its situation may change in the future, except as required under federal securities law. The Company qualifies all of its forward-looking statements by these cautionary statements.

NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURES

This document contains certain non-GAAP financial measures in addition to results presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America ("GAAP"). These non-GAAP measures are intended to provide the reader with additional supplemental perspectives on operating results, performance trends, and financial condition. Non-GAAP financial measures are not a substitute for GAAP measures; they should be read and used in conjunction with the Company's GAAP financial information. A reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to GAAP measures is provided below. In all cases, it should be understood that non-GAAP measures do not depict amounts that accrue directly to the benefit of shareholders. An item which management excludes when computing non-GAAP core earnings can be of substantial importance to the Company's results for any particular quarter or year. The Company's non-GAAP core earnings information set forth is not necessarily comparable to non- GAAP information which may be presented by other companies. Each non-GAAP measure used by the Company in this report as supplemental financial data should be considered in conjunction with the Company's GAAP financial information.

The Company utilizes the non-GAAP measure of core earnings in evaluating operating trends, including components for core revenue and expense. These measures exclude amounts which the Company views as unrelated to its normalized operations, including gains/losses on securities, premises, equipment and other real estate owned, acquisition costs, restructuring costs, legal settlements, and systems conversion costs. Non-GAAP adjustments are presented net of an adjustment for income tax expense.

The Company also calculates core earnings per share based on its measure of core earnings. The Company views these amounts as important to understanding its operating trends, particularly due to the impact of accounting standards related to acquisition activity. Analysts also rely on these measures in estimating and evaluating the Company's performance. Management also believes that the computation of non-GAAP core earnings and core earnings per share may facilitate the comparison of the Company to other companies in the financial services industry. The Company also adjusts certain equity related measures to exclude intangible assets due to the importance of these measures to the investment community.

CONTACTS
Josephine Iannelli; EVP, Chief Financial Officer & Treasurer; (207) 288-3314

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SOURCE: Bar Harbor Bankshares



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