Cowlitz Bancorp. in Longview, Wash., posted a first-quarter loss that was six times higher than a year earlier.

The $529.7 million-asset company said late Monday that it lost $12.2 million, or $23.77 a share, compared with a $1.9 million loss a year earlier. It took a $9.7 million provision for credit losses, versus $3.5 million a year earlier, and charged off $8 million in nonperforming loans. Nonperforming assets fell 15% from the fourth quarter and made up 8.5% of total loans.

CEO Richard J. Fitzpatrick said in a press release that the company's aggressiveness in addressing nonperforming assets has reduced its capital base. Its total risk-based capital ratio fell 684 basis points from a year earlier, to 4.36%. "We remain focused on exploring all options for raising capital," he said.

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