SANTA CRUZ, Calif., June 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Santa Cruz County Bank (OTC: SCZC), a top rated, high performing bank, announced its Board of Directors' declaration of an increased quarterly cash dividend in the amount of $0.075 per share, representing a 50% increase over the previous dividend payment. The dividend is payable on July 10, 2018 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on June 29, 2018. This is the 21st consecutive quarterly cash dividend declared by the bank. In addition to cash dividends, a 10% stock dividend was granted to shareholders in November 2017.
The Bank reported a record $2.5 million in net income for the quarter ended March 31, 2017; an increase of 35%, compared to the same period in 2017. This represented a 17.43% return on average equity. The book value per share of Santa Cruz County Bank's common stock at March 31, 2018 was $24.61, compared to $21.78 as of March 31, 2017. Shareholders' equity grew to $59.9 million, a 14% or $7.3 million increase compared to March 31, 2017. For the first quarter of 2018, Santa Cruz County Bank ranks 1st in overall performance, 1st in asset quality and 1st (lowest) in non-performing assets in California by Financial Management Consulting Group (FMC).
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. The Bank's SBA Department is recognized as a top SBA lender in Santa Cruz County, Silicon Valley and Central San Joaquin Valley. Santa Cruz County Bank is a top USDA lender in the state of California.
Santa Cruz County Bank stock is publicly traded under the stock symbol SCZC. Stock purchase orders may be placed through a brokerage firm, online, or through one of our 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 S&P Global Top 100 Community Banks 2017: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 63rd in the nation out of nearly 3,000 banks with assets under $1 billion.
Financial Management Consulting (FMC) Group: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 1st in overall performance among 159 California banks and ranked 1st in asset quality and also #1 (lowest) in non-performing assets for the first quarter 2018. The Bank has ranked in FMC's top ten banks in California for the past three years.
The Findley Reports, Inc.: Santa Cruz County Bank was named a Super Premier Performing Bank for its 2017 performance. The Bank has received the top ranking of Super Premier by Findley for eight consecutive years.
Bauer Financial Reports, Inc.: Santa Cruz County Bank rated five star or "Superior" for its financial strength for March 31, 2018.
American Banker Magazine: Santa Cruz County Bank ranked 24th out of 669 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
2018: Al Smith Friend of Agriculture Award by the Santa Cruz County Farm Bureau & Agri-Culture.
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.
2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013: Voted "Best Bank" by the readers of Good Times, a weekly publication with distribution throughout Santa Cruz County.
2018, 2017, 2016, 2015: Voted "Best Bank" by the readers of Santa Cruz Sentinel, a daily publication with distribution throughout Santa Cruz County.
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.