First Bancshares Inc. and its banking arm signed regulatory orders with the Office of Thrift Supervision to take certain measures to improve earnings and preserve the bank's capital resources, the company said in a release.

The cease and desist order also directs the Missouri-based savings and loan holding company and its bank to reduce classified assets and improve the assets classification policy, as well as reduce commercial real estate and other loan concentrations, discontinue stock repurchase programs and restrict dividend payments.

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