comscore Bankoh boosts loans, sets earnings-per-share record | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Bankoh boosts loans, sets earnings-per-share record


    The Bank of Hawaii branch at the Financial Plaza of the Pacific downtown.

Bank of Hawaii Corp. reported double-digit loan growth for the 10th straight quarter and achieved record earnings per share as it continued to benefit from the state’s robust economy.

The state’s second-largest bank said today that first-quarter net income rose 1.9 percent to $51.2 million, or $1.20 a share, from $50.2 million, or $1.16 a share, in the year-earlier period. Loans jumped 13 percent to $9.11 billion while deposits rose 7.3 percent to an all-time high of $14.48 billion.

“We’re happy with the quarter,” Peter Ho, chairman, president and CEO of Bank of Hawaii, said in a phone interview. “We had good quality growth in loans this quarter. We had good deposit growth. Both of those items reflect continued strength in the Hawaii economy. Expenses were pretty well controlled for us in the first quarter and the credit statistics continue to be benign.”

Bankoh easily beat analysts’ earnings per share consensus of $1.08, but not all the analysts factored in the sale of Visa Inc. shares that the bank made in the quarter.

The bank’s earnings were boosted during the January-March period by a $12.5 million gain resulting from the sale of 90,000 Class B shares of Visa, the credit card company. In the year-earlier quarter, Bankoh recorded a $11.4 gain from selling its Visa Class B shares. The bank, which now sells its Visa stock only in the first quarter of each year, obtained the shares for its membership stake in the card company when it went public in 2008. As of March 31, Bankoh had 90,914 shares remaining.

Ho said the bank may hold onto its remaining shares during the first quarter of 2018 because of potential litigation that Visa is facing with retailers that could reduce the value of the stock a year from now from where it is selling at today.

“We’re going to really think about that because that would be the last sale for us,” Ho said.

Bankoh, which announced its financial results before the stock market opened, saw its shares jump $1.33, or 1.6 percent, to close at $82.52.

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