Mercantile Bank Corp. in Grand Rapids reported Tuesday that it swung to a fourth-quarter loss of $26.4 million, from a profit of $300,000 a year earlier.

The loss to shareholders was $3.11 a share, compared with earnings of 4 cents a share in the 2008 quarter.

The $1.9 billion-asset company also announced Tuesday that on March 10 it would pay a dividend of 1 cent.

The fourth-quarter results included a one-time tax charge of $19.7 million.

At the end of December, Mercantile's nonperforming assets were $112 million, or 5.8% of total assets.

That was a 30-basis-point increase from Sept. 30 and a 320-basis-point increase from Dec. 31, 2008.

The company set aside $15.3 million for loan losses, compared with a $4 million provision in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Mercantile reported capital ratios well above regulatory minimums for being considered a well-capitalized institution.

It reported a Tier 1 leverage ratio of 9.14%, a Tier 1 risk-based ratio of 10.43%, and a total risk-based ratio of 11.70%.

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