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SWS Group, Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2012 Results

Bank Reduces Classified Assets by More Than 50 Percent from Prior Fiscal Year, and Reports Fiscal 2012 Pre-Tax Income of $7.3 Million

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DALLAS, Sept. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- SWS Group, Inc. (NYSE: SWS) (the "Company") today reported a net loss of $303,000 for its fiscal 2012 fourth quarter ended June 29, 2012, or $0.01 per diluted share, on net revenues of $72.5 million, compared with net income of $22,000, or less than $0.01 per diluted share, on net revenues of $76.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

For the 2012 fiscal year, the Company reported a net loss of $4.7 million, or $0.14 per diluted share, on net revenues of $293.4 million, compared with a net loss of $23.2 million, or $0.71 per diluted share, on net revenues of $342.1 million for fiscal 2011.

"Throughout the past fiscal year, SWS Group made significant progress in reducing classified and non-performing assets at our banking subsidiary, while renewing efforts to expand our clearing, retail and institutional businesses in what remains a challenging operating environment," said James H. Ross, chief executive officer of SWS Group, Inc. "It is also important to highlight that our banking subsidiary – Southwest Securities, FSB – reported a fiscal year pre-tax profit for the first time in three years. As we look ahead, we believe we are well positioned to pursue opportunities to build on the positive momentum created during the past year."

Net revenues (total revenue less interest expense) were $72.5 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, a decrease of $3.7 million from $76.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The primary contributor to the decrease was the interest cost associated with the capital raise completed last July, along with a $5.3 million decline in net interest revenue from reduced average loan balances at Southwest Securities, FSB (the "Bank"). A $4.5 million improvement in investment banking revenue was offset by a $1.2 million decline in net gains on principal transactions in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, as compared to the same period last fiscal year.

Fourth quarter fiscal 2012 operating expenses declined 5 percent to $71.9 million from $75.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The primary driver of the expense reduction was a $3.3 million pre-tax unrealized gain for the decrease in the value of warrants issued to Hilltop Holdings Inc. ("Hilltop") and Oak Hill Capital Partners ("Oak Hill") as part of the Company's capital raise completed in July 2011.

Pre-tax profit for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter was $638,000 compared to $938,000 in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. Non-deductible compensation expense and a change in the valuation allowance for a deferred tax asset resulted in higher tax expense for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter leading to the net loss.

For the 2012 fiscal year, net revenues decreased $48.6 million to $293.4 million from $342.1 million in fiscal 2011. The primary contributors to the decline were a $29.3 million decrease in net interest revenue, a $10.8 million decrease in commissions and a $9.2 million decrease in net gains on principal transactions. The decrease in net interest revenue was driven by a 27 percent decrease in the average loan balance at the Bank as compared to the same period last fiscal year. Interest expense on the $100 million loan from Hilltop and Oak Hill also reduced net interest revenue by $11.0 million. The decrease in commission revenue was driven by reduced commissions in the institutional and retail segments in fiscal 2012 as compared to fiscal 2011, due primarily to reduced institutional customer activity and reduced retail representative headcount. A decline in customer trading activity in the taxable fixed income and municipal finance businesses was the primary contributor to the decrease in net gains on principal transactions in fiscal 2012 as compared to fiscal 2011.

Fiscal 2012 operating expenses were $299.4 million, a decrease of $76.2 million as compared to fiscal 2011. The largest contributors to the decrease were a $48.5 million decrease in the Bank's loan loss provision, a $17.0 million decrease in other expense and an $11.8 million decrease in commissions and other employee compensation offset by a $3.7 million unrealized loss on warrant valuation. The decrease in other expense was primarily due to a $13.0 million decrease in the Bank's real estate owned loss provision. The decrease in commissions and other employee compensation was driven by an $8.4 million decrease in commission expense and a $3.5 million decrease in salaries, primarily due to reduced headcount.

Clearing Segment
The clearing segment reported a pre-tax loss of $327,000 for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, on net revenues of $4.6 million, as compared to a pre-tax loss of $287,000 on net revenues of $5.1 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The primary contributor to the decrease in net revenues was a $569,000 decrease in net clearing revenues due to a decline in the number of transactions processed for clearing correspondents in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, as compared to the same period last fiscal year.

Fourth quarter fiscal 2012 operating expenses in the clearing segment decreased $486,000 to $4.9 million, as compared to $5.4 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The decrease was due primarily to decreases in occupancy, equipment and computer services costs, and other expenses.

The clearing segment reported a pre-tax loss of $1.8 million on net revenues of $18.6 million for the 2012 fiscal year, as compared to pre-tax income of $501,000 on net revenues of $21.2 million in fiscal 2011. Changes in market conditions and a reduction in the number of clearing correspondents were the primary contributors to the decrease in net revenues. Total correspondent clearing customer assets under custody increased to $14.7 billion at June 29, 2012 from $14.4 billion at June 24, 2011, while the number of clearing correspondents decreased to 153 from 161 for the same periods, respectively.

The number of tickets processed during fiscal 2012 decreased to 1.7 million from 2.3 million in fiscal 2011, while revenue per ticket increased approximately 29 percent to $5.61 in fiscal 2012 from $4.35 in fiscal 2011.

Fiscal 2012 operating expenses in the clearing segment were $20.4 million, a decrease of $321,000 from $20.7 million in fiscal 2011.

Retail Segment
The retail segment posted a pre-tax loss of $1.9 million in the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter on net revenues of $26.6 million, as compared to pre-tax income of $165,000 on net revenues of $26.4 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

Retail segment operating expenses increased to $28.5 million in the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, as compared to $26.3 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The increase was due to $612,000 in additional commissions and other employee compensation expense, and a $1.3 million increase in legal expenses during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, as compared to the same period last fiscal year.

For the 2012 fiscal year, the retail segment reported a pre-tax loss of $1.9 million on net revenues of $106.9 million, as compared to pre-tax income of $1.4 million on net revenues of $109.7 million for fiscal 2011. A $4.1 million decrease in commissions due to a reduction in the average number of Private Client Group ("PCG") representatives was the primary contributor to the decrease in net revenues. The average PCG headcount in fiscal 2012 was 166, as compared to 184 in fiscal 2011. Total customer assets were $13.6 billion and assets under management were $761.1 million at June 29, 2012, as compared to $12.9 billion in total customer assets and $688.5 million in assets under management at June 24, 2011.

Retail segment operating expenses for fiscal 2012 increased slightly to $108.9 million, from $108.3 million in fiscal 2011.

Institutional Segment
For the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, the institutional segment posted pre-tax income of $11.1 million on net revenues of $34.1 million, as compared to pre-tax income of $8.8 million on net revenues of $32.0 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The increase in net revenues was primarily due to a $4.1 million increase in investment banking, advisory and administrative fees due to an increase in municipal new issue volume and corporate finance transactions, offset by a reduction in trading gains in the municipal business.

Fiscal 2012 fourth quarter operating expenses in the institutional segment decreased slightly to $23.1 million from $23.2 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

For the 2012 fiscal year, the institutional segment reported pre-tax income of $39.7 million on net revenues of $130.1 million, as compared to pre-tax income of $46.3 million on net revenues of $145.7 million for fiscal 2011. Commissions decreased $6.7 million in fiscal 2012, primarily in the taxable fixed income business, due to reduced customer activity as compared to fiscal 2011. Net gains on principal transactions decreased $8.2 million to $30.5 million in fiscal 2012 from $38.7 million in fiscal 2011, due primarily to a $5.2 million decline in municipal finance trading gains and a $3.6 million decrease in taxable fixed income trading gains in fiscal 2012 as compared to the prior fiscal year. These revenue decreases were partially offset by a $2.4 million increase in portfolio trading commissions.

Institutional segment operating expenses decreased 9 percent, or $9.0 million, to $90.4 million for the 2012 fiscal year from $99.4 million for fiscal 2011, primarily due to decreased commissions and other employee compensation expense.

Banking Segment
The Bank reported pre-tax income of $1.4 million on net revenues of $11.6 million for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, as compared to pre-tax income of $1.2 million on net revenues of $13.3 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The decrease in net revenues was driven by reduced net interest revenue due to a 23 percent decline in the Bank's average loan balance and a decrease in the net yield on interest earning assets during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

The Bank's operating expenses decreased to $10.1 million in the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter from $12.1 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011 due primarily to a $1.8 million decrease in other expenses  driven by decreases in the Bank's real estate owned loss provision, legal fees and regulatory assessments.

The Bank did not record a loan loss provision in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 or fiscal 2011. At June 30, 2012, the Bank's allowance for loan losses was $22.4 million, or 3.99 percent of loans held for investment excluding purchased mortgage loans, compared to $44.4 million, or 4.99 percent of loans held for investment excluding purchased mortgage loans, at June 30, 2011.

For the 2012 fiscal year, the Bank reported pre-tax income of $7.3 million on net revenues of $49.9 million, compared to a pre-tax loss of $46.3 million on net revenues of $64.3 million for fiscal 2011. The primary contributor to the decline in net revenues was a $17.9 million decrease in net interest revenue due to a 27 percent decrease in the average loan balances and a decrease in the net yield on interest-earning assets.

The Bank's operating expenses for fiscal 2012 decreased 61 percent to $42.6 million from $110.6 million in fiscal 2011, primarily due to a $48.5 million decrease in the Bank's loan loss provision and a $17.1 million decrease in other expenses.

At June 30, 2012, the Bank's non-performing assets were $72.7 million, a 19 percent decrease from $89.5 million at June 30, 2011. Total classified assets were $110.7 million at June 30, 2012, or 58 percent of capital plus allowance for loan losses, as compared to $228.5 million, or 120.5 percent of capital plus allowance for loan losses, at June 30, 2011.

At June 30, 2012, the Bank's Tier 1 core capital ratio was 12.6 percent and total risk-based capital was 19.2 percent, as compared to Tier 1 core capital of 9.9 percent and total risked-based capital of 15.6 percent at June 30, 2011.

Conference Call
SWS Group will hold a conference call to discuss its results for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter on Wednesday, September 5, 2012, at 10 a.m. Eastern Time (9 a.m. Central Time). The conference call will be broadcast live over the internet at http://www.videonewswire.com/event.asp?id=88511 or www.swst.com. An archive of the webcast will also be posted to the Company's website at www.swst.com.

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements.  Readers are cautioned that any forward-looking statements, including those predicting or forecasting future events or results, which depend on future events for their accuracy, embody projections or assumptions, or express the intent, belief or current expectations of the company or management, are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties.  Actual results may differ materially as a result of various factors, some of which are out of our control, including, but not limited to, volume of trading in securities, volatility of securities prices and interest rates, liquidity in capital and credit markets, availability of lines of credit, customer margin loan activity, creditworthiness of our correspondents and customers, demand for housing, general economic conditions, especially in Texas and New Mexico, changes in the commercial lending and regulatory environments and other factors discussed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and in our other reports filed with and available from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 

Segment Results

(In thousands)










Fiscal 2012


Fiscal 2011


4th Quarter 2012


4th Quarter 2011




Pretax




Pretax




Pretax




Pretax




Income




Income




Income




Income


Net Revenue


(Loss)


Net Revenue


(Loss)


Net Revenue


(Loss) 


Net Revenue


(Loss)

















Clearing        

$  18,614


$ (1,754)


$21,190


$      501


$ 4,563


$  (327)


$  5,089


$  (287)

Retail      

106,882


(1,906)


109,657


1,356


26,556


(1,927)


26,436


165

Institutional     

130,077


39,654


145,695


46,251


34,112


11,057


32,043


8,808

Banking   

49,942


7,316


64,309


(46,330)


11,563


1,445


13,265


1,184

Other 
















   consolidated
   entities       

(12,092)


(49,250)


1,213


(35,232)


(4,301)


(9,610)


(649)


(8,932)

Consolidated   

$293,423


$ (5,940)


$342,064


$(33,454)


$72,493


$   638


$76,184


$   938

 

SWS GROUP, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
Consolidated Statements of Financial Condition
June 29, 2012 and June 24, 2011
(In thousands, except par values and share amounts)






June 29, 2012


June 24, 2011

Assets




Cash and cash equivalents

$         81,826


$         298,903

Restricted cash and cash equivalents

30,044


Assets segregated for regulatory purposes

176,299


238,325

Receivable from brokers, dealers and clearing organizations

1,425,697


1,620,523

Receivable from clients, net of allowances

256,840


240,491

Loans held for sale


5,241

Loans, net

833,640


946,768

Securities owned, at fair value

231,151


221,587

Securities held to maturity

25,904


34,176

Securities purchased under agreements to resell

25,186


42,649

Goodwill

7,552


7,552

Securities available for sale

307,789


2,020

Other assets

144,915


143,922

     Total assets

$     3,546,843


$     3,802,157





Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity




Short-term borrowings

$           67,500


$         110,000

Payable to brokers, dealers and clearing organizations

1,349,370


1,568,033

Payable to clients

347,574


397,590

Deposits

1,062,233


1,106,471

Securities sold under agreements to repurchase

27,465


10,313

Securities sold, not yet purchased, at fair value

70,155


68,661

Drafts payable

24,970


23,656

Advances from Federal Home Loan Bank

68,641


94,712

Long-term debt, net

79,076


Stock purchase warrants

27,810


Other liabilities

66,347


65,252

     Total liabilities

3,191,141


3,444,688





Commitments and contingencies








Stockholders' equity:




Preferred stock of $1.00 par value.  Authorized 100,000 shares; none issued


Common stock of $0.10 par value.  Authorized 60,000,000 shares, issued 33,312,140 and outstanding 32,576,307 shares at June 29, 2012; issued 33,312,140 and outstanding 32,285,076 shares at June 24, 2011

3,331


3,331

   Additional paid-in capital

324,556


326,986

Retained earnings

30,084


34,813

Accumulated other comprehensive income – unrealized holding gain, net of tax

2,745


765

   Deferred compensation, net

3,427


3,308

   Treasury stock (735,833 shares at June 29, 2012 and 1,027,064 shares at June 24, 2011, at cost)

(8,441)


(11,734)

           Total stockholders' equity

355,702


357,469

     Total liabilities and stockholders' equity

$     3,546,843


$     3,802,157

 

 

SWS GROUP, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES

Consolidated Statements of Income (Loss) and Comprehensive Income (Loss)

For the three and twelve months ended June 29, 2012 and June 24, 2011

(In thousands, except per share and share amounts)







Three Months

Ended

June 29, 2012

Three Months

Ended

June 24, 2011

Twelve Months

Ended

June 29, 2012

Twelve Months

Ended

June 24, 2011

Revenues:





     Net revenues from clearing operations

$          2,074

$          2,643

$       9,385

$       10,708

     Commissions

32,284

32,657

131,855

142,667

     Interest

27,393

31,687

122,120

138,867

     Investment banking, advisory and administrative fees

12,748

8,229

39,377

39,766

     Net gains on principal transactions

7,042

8,260

29,486

38,646

     Other

4,550

5,267

21,518

19,165

Total revenue

86,091

88,743

353,741

389,819






     Interest expense

13,598

12,559

60,318

47,755

          Net revenues

72,493

76,184

293,423

342,064






Non-Interest Expenses:





     Commissions and other employee compensation

52,123

51,503

208,635

220,387

     Occupancy, equipment and computer service costs

8,009

8,737

31,869

34,057

     Communications

3,164

3,051

12,380

12,862

     Floor brokerage and clearing organization charges

1,090

1,190

4,201

4,486

     Advertising and promotional

817

713

3,093

2,770

     Provision for loan loss

__

__

2,475

50,967

     Unrealized (gain) loss on warrant valuation

(3,257)

__

3,674

__

     Other

9,909

10,052

33,036

49,989

Total non-interest expenses

71,855

75,246

299,363

375,518






Income (loss) before income tax expense (benefit)

638

938

(5,940)

(33,454)

Income tax expense (benefit)

941

916

(1,211)

(10,251)

Net income (loss)

(303)

22

(4,729)

(23,203)

Net gain recognized in other comprehensive income

762

128

1,980

461

Comprehensive income (loss)

$            459

$         150

$      (2,749)

$      (22,742)

   Earnings (loss) per share – basic





   Net income (loss)

$          (0.01)

$          0.00

$          (0.14)

$          (0.71)

   Weighted average shares outstanding – basic

32,825,827

32,520,359

32,649,544

32,514,945






   Earnings (loss) per share – diluted





   Net income (loss)

$          (0.01)

$          0.00

$          (0.14)

$          (0.71)

   Weighted average shares outstanding – diluted

 

32,825,827

 

32,520,359

 

32,649,544

 

32,514,945

 

 

 

SOURCE SWS Group, Inc.



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