An uptick in home loans helped First PacTrust Bancorp (BANC) narrow its losses in the fourth quarter.
The Irvine, Calif., company lost $3.2 million, compared with $5.6 million a year earlier.
Lending increased 59%, to $1.2 billion. First PacTrust has assets of $1.6 billion.
Noninterest income for the quarter was $16 million, compared with $500,000 a year earlier, primarily because of revenue from mortgage banking.
Net interest income roughly doubled, to $14.8 million, year over year. Net interest margin expanded 39 basis points, to 3.77%, because of higher yields and lower costs of deposits.
Noninterest expense rose 158%, to $28.9 million, because of expenses related to the company's pending purchase of Private Bank of California and the expansion of First PacTrust's residential mortgage business.
Its efficiency ratio improved to 93.96%, from 140.3%, year over year.
And its provision for loan losses fell 14.9%, to $3.5 million.
"We continue to focus on the closing of the acquisition of the Private Bank of California, the realization of operating synergies relating to our recently closed acquisitions, and the continued expansion of our commercial banking and residential lending platforms," Steve Sugarman, First PacTrust's chief executive, said in a news release.