Eagle Bancorp's (EGBN) earnings rose 51% from a year earlier as the Bethesda, Md., made more loans and collected lower-cost deposits.

The company earned $9.5 million, or 44 cents a share. Net interest income, including the loan-loss provision, rose 32% from a year earlier, to $29.7 million.

The improvement came as Eagle increased lending in nearly every major category. Its largest single loan category, income-producing commercial real estate, rose 22% from a year earlier, to $943 million. The only loan category that shrunk in size was owner-occupied construction loans, which fell 53% from a year earlier, to $14.7 million.

Eagle's loan-loss provision rose 26% from a year earlier, to $3.6 million, because of its loan growth and a higher rate of chargeoffs.

The $3 billion-asset company said its net interest margin widened by 46 basis points from a year earlier, to 4.44%, because of lower funding costs. Eagle's total balance of higher-cost certificates of deposit with balances of $100,000 or more, fell 48% from a year earlier, to $182 million.

Noninterest income rose 38% from a year earlier, to $4.85 million, primarily because of refinancing activity.

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