Despite squeezed margins due to rising deposit costs, Centura Banks Inc. reported a healthy 14% improvement in third-quarter earnings from a year earlier, to $15.2 million.

Per-share earnings of 66 cents were in line with consensus estimates, including 2 cents attributed to lower Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. premiums. The FDIC had voted in August to reduce the rate most banks pay for deposit insurance. But Centura will not receive as much benefit as some banks because 30% of its $4 billion in deposits come from recent thrift acquisitions and are still insured by the S&L fund, which charges a higher premium.

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