New Century Bancorp Reports Fourth Quarter And Year-end 2012 Results

Positive year, fueled by both core earnings and non-recurring gains, is capped by strong fourth quarter earnings.

Feb 15, 2013, 10:00 ET from New Century Bancorp, Inc.

DUNN, N.C., Feb. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- New Century Bancorp, Inc. (the "Company" NASDAQ: NCBC), the holding company for New Century Bank, today reported net income of $4.6 million for the year ended December 31, 2012, and basic and diluted earnings per share of $0.67. These results compare to a net loss of $163,000 and basic and diluted losses per share of $0.02 for the year ended December 31, 2011. For the quarter ended December 31, 2012, the Company reported net income of $735,000 and basic and diluted income per share of $0.11, compared to net income of $632,000 and basic and diluted income per share of $0.09 for fourth quarter 2011.

Net income for 2012 was positively impacted by two non-recurring events: a $2.4 million loan recovery in the first quarter and a $557,000 gain on the sale of New Century Bank's Pembroke and Raeford branches in the second quarter.

In a year-to-year comparison, non-performing assets are down from $22.7 million to $14.9 million, resulting in overall improvement in asset quality. At year-end, the Company remains well-capitalized, which is the highest capital category based on regulatory guidelines.

Total assets for the Company as of December 31, 2012, were $588.2 million, total deposits were $498.6 million, and total loans were $367.9 million, compared to total assets of $589.7 million, total deposits of $501.4 million, and total loans of $417.6 million as of the same date in 2011. The decline in deposits and loans in a year-to-year comparison is due in part to the sale of the Pembroke and Raeford offices to Lumbee Guaranty Bank during second quarter 2012, and to a generally soft regional economy. 

"On behalf of our board of directors and our staff," said William L. Hedgepeth, president and CEO of New Century Bancorp and New Century Bank. "We are pleased with our results of operations in 2012. While overall results were positively impacted by non-recurring events, results from core operations were strong on their own.

"There are still challenges ahead for our bank and for the banking industry as a whole. The biggest challenge is continuing soft loan demand and a low interest rate environment that results in a tight net interest margin. In addition, the cost of complying with new legislation and the resultant regulatory requirements is steep. While the economy is showing signs of recovery, it is still struggling, and to a great extent remains a jobless recovery. Many of our customers—both personal and business—are working hard to gain financial ground lost over the past few years. Our role is to stand with them and do all we can to help.

"In 2013, we will launch a number of strategic initiatives and will introduce several new products and services," Hedgepeth continued. "We feel strongly about the markets we serve and our ability to meet their banking needs. We appreciate the support of our shareholders and our customers."

New Century Bank has branch offices in these North Carolina communities: Dunn, Clinton, Fayetteville, Goldsboro, Lillington, Lumberton, and loan production offices in Greenville and Raleigh.

The information as of and for the quarter and year ended December 31, 2012, as presented is unaudited. This news release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, without limitation, (i) statements regarding certain of our goals and expectations with respect to earnings, earnings per share, revenue, expenses and the growth rate in such items, as well as other measures of economic performance, including statements relating to estimates of credit quality trends, and (ii) statements preceded by, followed by or that include the words "may," "could," "should," "would," "believe," "anticipate," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "plan," "projects," "outlook" or similar expressions. The actual results might differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements for various reasons, including, but not limited to, our ability to manage growth, our limited operating history, substantial changes in financial markets, regulatory changes, changes in interest rates, loss of deposits and loan demand to other savings and financial institutions, and changes in real estate values and the real estate market. Additional information concerning factors that could cause actual results to materially differ from those in the forward-looking statements is contained in the Company's SEC filings, including its periodic reports under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, copies of which are available upon request from the Company.

SOURCE New Century Bancorp, Inc.