Anticipating a further slowing of the economy, Eagle Bancshares is getting out of the construction lending and retail mortgage businesses in markets outside of its home market, the Atlanta area.
The $1.2 billion-asset parent of Tucker Federal Bank announced its plans late last Thursday, along with a $947,000 loss for the quarter that ended Dec. 31, the third of its fiscal year.
Eagle offices in Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee, and other parts of Georgia.
The construction lending business has been profitable since Eagle, which is based in Tucker, Ga., opened the satellite offices in the mid-1990s. But chief financial officer Sheila E. Ray said that the company is wary of having dedicated loan production offices outside its immediate geographic area and does not want to spread its banking operations too thin.
The company has a desire to build an Atlanta banking franchise where there is real value to the shareholders and a strong market for these products, said Ms. Ray, who was named CFO last week. We dont have the ability to cross over our other banking services or the means to focus dollars in these other markets.
The retail mortgage department has had several losing quarters, but the losses are decreasing and loan production is up, Ms. Ray said.
Because the restructuring will occur over the next few quarters, the company expects to take a one-time charge of $4.5 million this quarter.
It reported earnings of 17 cents a share for the December quarter, compared with 38 cents a year earlier. Nine-month earnings were 33 cents per share, compared with $1.24 in the comparable 1999 period.