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First Hawaiian earnings soar 10.1%

First Hawaiian Bank’s earnings jumped 10.1% in the third quarter as the company sharply reduced its nonperforming assets and improved its noninterest income.

The state’s largest bank reported today that net income rose to $74.2 million, or 56 cents a share, from $67.4 million, or 50 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Its core net income, which excludes special items, was $75.9 million, or 57 cents a share, which beats analysts’ consensus estimate of 54 cents a share.

“Our earnings were driven by excellent credit quality and continued prudent expense management,” said Bob Harrison, chairman, president and CEO. “During the quarter we continued to improve the quality of our balance sheet as we sold over $400 million of shared national credits and reduced public time deposits, enabling us to increase the size of our stock repurchase program.”

The bank’s net interest income, the difference between what it collects on loans and what it pays for deposits), rose 1.3% to $143.1M from the year-earlier quarter while its net interest margin rose 8 basis points to 3.19%. Its net interest margin, however, was down from 3.25% after the second quarter as low interest rates continue to squeeze banks’ profitability nationwide. Noninterest income, which includes service charges and fees, gained 5.4% to $50 million.

Loans edged up 1.9% to $12.84 billion while deposits ticked up 1% to $16.86 billion. The ratio of nonperforming assets to total loans and leases and other real estate owned was 0.03% at the end of the third quarter.

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