SANTA CRUZ, Calif., March 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Santa Cruz County Bank (OTC: SCZC), a top rated, high performing bank, announced that its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend in the amount of $0.05 per share. The dividend is payable on April 10, 2017 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on March 31, 2017. This is the sixteenth consecutive quarterly cash dividend declared by the bank.
The bank reported a record $6.5 million in net income for the year ended December 31, 2016, an increase of 19%, compared to the prior year ended December 31, 2015. This represented a 13.58% return on average equity for the year. The book value per share of Santa Cruz County Bank's common stock at December 31, 2016 was $23.15, compared to $20.37 as of December 31, 2015. Shareholders' equity grew to $50.7 million, a 15% or $6.6 million increase compared to December 31, 2015. Record fourth quarter and annual earnings placed Santa Cruz County Bank in the #2 ranking for overall performance for California banks by Financial Management Consulting (FMC) Group.
ABOUT SANTA CRUZ COUNTY BANK
Santa Cruz County Bank, founded in 2004, is a locally owned and operated community bank with offices located in Aptos, Capitola, Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley and Watsonville. The bank offers a variety of competitive deposit and lending solutions for businesses and individuals; including business loans, lines of credit, commercial real estate financing, agricultural loans, SBA and USDA government guaranteed loans, credit cards, merchant services, remote deposit capture, mobile and online banking, bill payment, and cash management. For the past nine years, the Bank's SBA Department has been recognized as a top SBA lender in Santa Cruz County. Santa Cruz County Bank is a top USDA lender in the state of California.
Santa Cruz County Bank stock is publicly traded on the OTC marketplace under the stock symbol SCZC. Stock purchase orders may be placed through a brokerage firm or one of the Market Makers listed in the Investor Relations section of the bank's website. For more information about Santa Cruz County Bank, please visit our website www.sccountybank.com.
NATIONAL, STATE, AND LOCAL RATINGS AND AWARDS
OTCQX Best 50: Santa Cruz County Bank was named one of 50 best performing companies on OTCQX based on total return and growth in average daily dollar volume in 2015.
Financial Management Consulting (FMC) Group: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 2nd in overall performance among 185 California banks and ranked 1st (lowest) in non-performing assets for the full year in 2016. The Bank has ranked in FMC's top ten banks in California for the past two years.
The Findley Reports, Inc.: Santa Cruz County Bank was named a Super Premier Performing Bank for its 2015 performance. The Bank has received the top ranking of Super Premier by Findley for six years.
Bauer Financial Reports, Inc.: Santa Cruz County Bank rated five star or "Superior" for its financial strength for the quarter ended December 31, 2016.
American Banker Magazine: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 44th out of 684 institutions in American Banker Magazine's "Top Performing 200 Community Banks & Thrifts in the United States" based upon 3-year average return on equity. The Bank has ranked in the Top 200 Community Banks in the United States for three consecutive years.
Independent Banker Magazine, published by the ICBA: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 22nd in its Top Best Performing Member Community Banks for return on average equity.
COMMUNITY AWARDS AND RECOGNITION
2017: Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Cruz County "Big Step Award" for the 2016 Holiday Food Drive.
2016: United Way of Santa Cruz County "Corporate Spirit Award" for outstanding support.
2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013: Voted "Best Bank" by the readers of Good Times, a weekly publication with distribution throughout Santa Cruz County.
2017, 2016, 2015: Voted "Best Bank" by the readers of Santa Cruz Sentinel, a daily publication with distribution throughout Santa Cruz County.
2013: Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz County "Be the Difference" Business Award for leadership and volunteerism.
This release may contain forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Such risks and uncertainties may include but are not necessarily limited to fluctuations in interest rates, inflation, government regulations and general economic conditions, and competition within the business areas in which the Bank is conducting its operations, including the real estate market in California and other factors beyond the Bank's control. Such risks and uncertainties could cause results for subsequent interim periods or for the entire year to differ materially from those indicated. Readers should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements, which reflect management's view only as of the date hereof. The Bank undertakes no obligation to publicly revise these forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.
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SOURCE Santa Cruz County Bank