Zions Bancorporation Reports 2009 First Quarter Loss Driven Largely by Noncash Goodwill Impairment
Company Builds Loan Loss Reserves by $146 Million While Net Loan Charge-offs Decline
Las Vegas, Nev.
April 20, 2009
LAS VEGAS, April 20, 2009— Nevada State Bank's parent company, Zions Bancorporation (Nasdaq: ZION) ("Zions" or "the Company"), today reported a first quarter loss from core banking operations of $0.39 per diluted common share, excluding impairment and valuation losses on securities of $1.35 per diluted share and noncash charges from goodwill impairment of $5.55 per diluted share. Including these charges, the first quarter net loss applicable to common shareholders was $832.2 million, or $7.29 per diluted share.
First Quarter 2009 Highlights
"In what continues to be perhaps the most difficult economic environment in over half a century, our balance sheet remains strong, with record levels of liquidity," said Harris H. Simmons, chairman and chief executive officer. "After several quarters of significant increases, net loan charge-offs actually declined this quarter. And over the past two quarters we have reduced the goodwill on our balance sheet by nearly 50%. While these noncash goodwill impairments impact reported earnings, they have no impact on regulatory and tangible capital ratios," Simmons added. "In addition, we continue to successfully serve our customers and, in fact, extended $3.8 billion of credit during the quarter, of which $1.9 billion were new loans to credit-worthy individuals and businesses. This continued lending is important to our customers because it helps them manage in this very challenging environment and, in turn, will bolster the overall economy."
Acquisition of Alliance Bank
On February 6, 2009, the Company's California Bank & Trust subsidiary acquired the approximately $1.1 billion of assets of the failed Alliance Bank headquartered in Culver City, California from the FDIC as receiver, including the entire loan portfolio, $1.0 billion of deposits, and five branches. In addition to the excess of assets over liabilities, CB&T received approximately $10 million in cash from the FDIC and entered into a loss sharing agreement in which the FDIC generally will assume 80% of the first $275 million of credit losses and 95% of the credit losses in excess of $275 million. As a result of the loss sharing agreement, the acquired assets are presented in the Company's balance sheet as "FDIC-supported assets."
On-balance-sheet net loans and leases of $41.9 billion at March 31, 2009 increased approximately $0.2 billion or 2.6% annualized from $41.7 billion at December 31, 2008, and increased approximately $2.2 billion or 5.6% from $39.7 billion at March 31, 2008. The presentation of on-balance sheet net loans and leases excludes loans held for sale for all periods presented. Excluding the $0.8 billion of loans from Alliance at March 31, 2009, on-balance sheet net loans and leases decreased approximately $0.6 billion or 5.4% annualized during the quarter due to pay-downs and charge-offs.
Average total deposits for the first quarter of 2009 increased $2.5 billion or 25.7% annualized to $42.1 billion compared to $39.6 billion for the fourth quarter of 2008, and increased $5.5 billion or 15.1% compared to $36.6 billion for the first quarter of 2008. Excluding the average deposits from Alliance for the quarter, average total deposits increased $2.0 billion or 20.6% annualized for the first quarter. The growth occurred across most deposit types. Average noninterest-bearing demand deposits increased $0.5 billion or 23.6% annualized to $9.9 billion compared to $9.4 billion for the fourth quarter of 2008, including $93.1 million of average demand deposits from Alliance. The growth in deposits was used to reduce short-term FHLB advances and other borrowings by $1.6 billion to $0.4 billion at March 31, 2009.
Net Interest Income
The net interest margin was 3.93% for the first quarter of 2009 compared to 4.20% for the fourth quarter of 2008 and 4.23% for the first quarter of 2008. The spread between loan yields and deposit rates remained essentially unchanged from the fourth quarter. The decreased net interest margin for the first quarter of 2009 compared to the fourth quarter of 2008 was driven primarily by an increase in the Company's liquidity position accompanied by a significant decrease in yields on short-term investments, and by the increase in nonaccrual loans. On average during the quarter, the Company had approximately $3 billion of short-term investments including approximately $1 billion held by the Parent.
Net interest income for the first quarter of 2009 decreased $33.6 million to $474.8 million compared to $508.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2008, and decreased $11.7 million or 2.4% compared to $486.5 million for the first quarter of 2008.
As of March 31, 2009, the Company estimates that its available borrowing capacity from the Federal Reserve and the FHLB approximates one-third of its deposits.
Impairment Loss on Goodwill
The Company recognized an impairment loss on goodwill during the first quarter of 2009 of $634.0 million or $5.55 per diluted share compared to $353.8 million during the fourth quarter of 2008. The first quarter impairment loss was at Amegy Bank of Texas, which has $616 million of goodwill remaining after this impairment. This loss primarily reflects declines in market values of peer banks in Texas and a weaker economic outlook in that state. The loss is a noncash accounting adjustment to the Company's balance sheet that does not affect regulatory and tangible capital ratios. The goodwill impairment losses during the last two quarters have reduced the amount of the Company's goodwill by approximately $1.0 billion, or half of the balance at September 30, 2008.
Nonperforming assets were $1,770.2 million at March 31, 2009 ($1,663.2 million excluding FDIC-supported assets) compared to $1,140.5 million at December 31, 2008 and $434.3 million at March 31, 2008. The increase related mainly to commercial real estate loans primarily in Nevada, Arizona and Texas and to commercial and industrial loans primarily in Utah. The ratio of nonperforming assets excluding FDIC-supported assets to net loans and leases and other real estate owned was 4.00% at March 31, 2009 compared to 2.71% at December 31, 2008 and 1.09% at March 31, 2008.
Net loan and lease charge-offs for the first quarter of 2009 were $151.7 million or 1.47% annualized of average loans excluding FDIC-supported assets. This compares with $179.7 million or 1.72% annualized of average loans for the fourth quarter of 2008 and $50.8 million or 0.52% annualized of average loans for the first quarter of 2008.>
The provision for loan losses was $297.6 million for the first quarter of 2009 compared to $285.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2008 and $92.3 million for the first quarter of 2008. The provision for the first quarter of 2009 was 2.88% annualized of average loans excluding FDIC-supported assets and was $145.9 million in excess of net loan and lease charge-offs.
The allowance for loan losses as a percentage of net loans and leases excluding FDIC-supported assets was 2.03% at March 31, 2009 compared to 1.65% at December 31, 2008 and 1.26% at March 31, 2008. The combined allowance for loan losses and the reserve for unfunded lending commitments was $885.6 million, or 2.16% of net loans and leases excluding FDIC-supported assets at March 31, 2009, compared to 1.77% at December 31, 2008 and 1.33% at March 31, 2008. The $0.8 billion of loans from Alliance were recorded at fair value without a corresponding allowance for loan losses, and as noted, are supported by a loss sharing agreement with the FDIC.
During the first quarter of 2009, the Company recognized losses on investment securities of $249.4 million. These losses consisted of other-than-temporary impairment ("OTTI") of $49.0 million or $0.26 per diluted share, and valuation losses on securities purchased of $200.4 million or $1.09 per diluted share, which included $181.7 million from Lockhart Funding LLC and $18.7 million from the purchase of auction rate securities from customers.
The Company recognized OTTI during the first quarter of 2009 according to FSP FAS 115-2 and FAS 124-2 issued by the FASB on April 9, 2009. This new guidance requires that credit-related OTTI be recognized in earnings while noncredit-related OTTI on securities not expected to be sold is recognized in other comprehensive income ("OCI"). The credit-related OTTI recognized in earnings during the first quarter of $49.0 million related to securities newly deemed OTTI and to securities previously adjusted for OTTI as follows:
Noncredit-related OTTI on securities not expected to be sold of $82.9 million ($49.9 million after-tax) was recognized in OCI during the first quarter of 2009. Also under the new guidance, the Company reclassified the noncredit-related portion of OTTI losses previously recognized in earnings during 2008 and the fourth quarter of 2007. The $137.5 million after-tax amount was reflected as a cumulative effect adjustment that increased retained earnings and decreased accumulated OCI. This reclassification had a positive impact on regulatory capital and no impact on tangible common equity.
The $181.7 million of valuation losses on securities purchased resulted from purchases by Zions Bank from Lockhart of $537 million of AAA and AA-rated securities that were downgraded. As disclosed in a previous SEC filing, Lockhart had remaining assets of approximately $186 million at March 31, 2009 compared to $738 million at December 31, 2008. Lockhart's diminished size will make it difficult to maintain a viable off-balance sheet commercial paper securities conduit. Accordingly, Zions Bank expects to acquire the remaining assets of Lockhart sometime during the second quarter of 2009. The fair value of Lockhart's assets at March 31, 2009 was approximately $180 million. The effects of these security purchases and the potential acquisition of the remaining Lockhart securities on the Company's tangible common equity ratio are discussed subsequently.
The remaining $18.7 million of valuation losses on securities purchased resulted from our voluntary purchase of all of the $255.3 million of auction rate securities previously sold to customers of certain of the Company's subsidiaries.
Total noninterest income for the first quarter of 2009 was $(111.6) million compared to $(82.3) million for the fourth quarter of 2008 and $111.0 million for the first quarter of 2008. The amount for the first quarter of 2009 includes the previously discussed impairment and valuation losses on securities of $249.4 million compared to $204.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2008.
Fair value and nonhedge derivative income was $4.0 million during the first quarter compared to a loss of $5.8 million during the fourth quarter. The increase primarily reflects a reduced loss compared to the fourth quarter on a CDO security elected under the fair value option and net changes in credit valuation adjustments on derivatives.
Net equity securities gains (losses) were $1.9 million for the first quarter compared to $(14.1) million for the fourth quarter. The fourth quarter loss included an $11.0 million impairment on Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation stock.
Noninterest expense for the first quarter of 2009 was $376.2 million compared to $398.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2008 and $350.1 million for the first quarter of 2008. Salaries and employee benefits declined $5.2 million or 2.5% compared to the first quarter of 2008, but increased from the fourth quarter of 2008 due to increased payroll taxes and to adjustments in the fourth quarter for certain employee benefit and variable compensation accruals. Other real estate expenses decreased $21.8 million from the fourth quarter of 2008 and FDIC premiums increased $8.4 million.
Capital Management - The Company's tangible common equity ratio was 5.26% at March 31, 2009 compared to 5.89% at December 31, 2008 and 5.73% at March 31, 2008. The decrease of 63 basis points during the first quarter consisted primarily of 21 basis points from the purchases of securities from Lockhart, 10 basis points from the acquisition of Alliance Bank, and 23 basis points for the decline of securities' fair values in OCI.
The tangible equity ratio was 8.28% at March 31, 2009 compared to 8.91% at December 31, 2008 and 6.26% at March 31, 2008. At March 31, 2009, estimated regulatory Tier 1 risk-based capital and total risk-based capital were $5,204 million and $7,374 million compared to $5,269 million and $7,386 million at December 31, 2008, respectively. Estimated ratios at March 31, 2009 for Tier 1 risk-based capital and total risk-based capital were 9.33% and 13.23% compared to 10.22% and 14.32% at December 31, 2008, respectively.
Weighted average common and common-equivalent shares outstanding for the first quarter of 2009 were 114,106,164 compared to 114,065,100 for the fourth quarter of 2008 and 106,687,211 for the first quarter of 2008. Common shares outstanding at March 31, 2009 were 115,335,668 compared to 115,344,813 at December 31, 2008 and 107,139,188 at March 31, 2008.
Zions will host a conference call to discuss these first quarter results at 5:30 p.m. ET this afternoon (April 20, 2009). Media representatives, analysts and the public are invited to listen to this discussion by calling 1-800-261-3417 (international: 617-614-3673) and entering the passcode 21991094, or via on-demand webcast. A link to the webcast will be available on the Zions Bancorporation Web site at www.zionsbancorporation.com. A replay of the call will be available from 6:30 p.m. ET on Monday, April 20, 2009, until midnight ET on Monday, April 27, 2009, by dialing 1-888-286-8010 (international: 617-801-6888) and entering the passcode 84841441. The webcast of the conference call will also be archived and available for 30 days.
Zions Bancorporation is one of the nation's premier financial services companies, consisting of a collection of great banks in select high growth markets. Zions operates its banking businesses under local management teams and community identities through approximately 513 offices in ten Western and Southwestern states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Washington. The Company is a national leader in Small Business Administration lending and public finance advisory services. In addition, Zions is included in the S&P 500 and NASDAQ Financial 100 indices. Investor information and links to subsidiary banks can be accessed at www.zionsbancorporation.com.
Statements in this news release that are based on other than historical data are forward-looking, within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements provide current expectations or forecasts of future events. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, nor should they be relied upon as representing management's views as of any subsequent date. Forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties and actual results may differ materially from those presented, either expressed or implied, in this news release. Factors that might cause such differences include, but are not limited to: the Company's ability to successfully execute its business plans and achieve its objectives; changes in general economic and financial market conditions, either internationally, nationally or locally in areas in which the Company conducts its operations, including changes in asset-backed commercial paper markets and valuations in structured securities and other assets; changes in governmental policies and programs resulting from general economic and financial market conditions; changes in interest and funding rates; continuing consolidation in the financial services industry; new litigation or changes in existing litigation; increased competitive challenges and expanding product and pricing pressures among financial institutions; legislation or regulatory changes which adversely affect the Company's operations or business; and changes in accounting policies or procedures as may be required by the Financial Accounting Standards Board or other regulatory agencies.
Additional factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements are discussed in the 2007 Annual Report on Form 10-K of Zions Bancorporation filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") and available at the SEC's Internet site (http://www.sec.gov).
The Company specifically disclaims any obligation to update any factors or to publicly announce the result of revisions to any of the forward-looking statements included herein to reflect future events or developments.
Nevada State Bank, with assets of $4.0 billion, is the fourth largest commercial bank in Nevada. Established in 1959, it is the oldest state-chartered bank in Nevada with a total of 59 branches statewide. Nevada State Bank is a full-service bank offering a complete range of consumer and business services. For more information on Nevada State Bank, call 702.383.0009 or access www.nsbank.com.