Hudson United Bancorp in Mahwah, N.J., announced Thursday that its fourth-quarter earnings will be well below analyst estimates, because of delays in integrating acquisitions and lingering troubles from its failed merger with Dime Bancorp.

The $6.9 billion-asset company said it would take a charge of $22 million in the quarter, $6.2 million more than it forecast.

As a result earnings will be about 16 cents per share, against analyst estimates of 45 cents. In the year-earlier period Hudson had earnings of 52 cents a share.

It attributed the higher-than-expected charge to delays in closing deals for JeffBanks and Southern Jersey Bancorp as well as "interruption to normal operations" created by the Dime affair.

Hudson president and chief executive officer Kenneth T. Neilson said the charges would be the last in connection with the company's deals and that it expects "historical revenue growth" in 2001.

Heather Dilbeck, an analyst with Ryan, Beck Southeast Research in Livingston, N.J., said the charges were not surprising.

"It looks like a 'kitchen sink' fourth quarter where they are trying to clean up everything and put Dime behind them," she said.

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