Premier Financial Bancorp Inc. in Huntington, W.Va., said Tuesday that its fourth-quarter earnings fell nearly 50% from a year earlier, to $2.5 million.

A year earlier, the $1.2 billion-asset company bought Abigail Adams National Bancorp Inc., creating a $3.6 million bargain purchase gain that lifted earnings. Excluding that prior gain, Premier's fourth-quarter earnings rose 71%.

Premier's latest results included a 1.8% increase in net interest income and a 6% rise in noninterest income. It also had a lower loan-loss provision and lower operating expenses.

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