Resource Bancshares Mortgage Group reported fourth-quarter net income of $7.4 million, 25% more than a year earlier.

Earnings per share rose 21%, to 35 cents, missing analysts' estimates by 3 cents.

Net income for the year increased 23%, to $28 million. Earnings per share increased 15%, to $1.35.

Resource originated $10.8 billion of mortgages last year, 8% more than in 1996.

The company attributed the year's net income increase to improved margins in its conforming business and its expansion into subprime lending.

Resource bought a wholesale subprime lender last year and had agreed to buy another subprime lender, Walsh Holding Co. That agreement fell through after allegations of fraud at Walsh surfaced. Resource originated $340 million of subprime loans in 1997.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.