First Bank of Georgia holding company nearly triples quarterly earnings

The Augusta company that owns First Bank of Georgia reported more than $2.2 million in quarterly profits Wednesday.

Georgia-Carolina Bancshares Inc. posted a net income almost triple that reported in the third quarter of 2011. According to its earnings release, the company had profit of $2.2 million, or 62 cents per share, compared to $789,000, or 22 cents per share, in last year’s quarter.

Chief Executive Remer Brinson III said the bank is closing more mortgages, up 17 percent over last year, and has experienced fewer troubles from loan charge-offs and having to set aside money to cover the bad loans.

“Although loan demand remains soft, we have maintained a healthy net-interest margin. Non-interest income has grown over last year due to increased mortgage origination volumes and yields,” Brinson said.

Non-interest income – which comes from service charges on deposits, the sale of mortgage loans and securities – was $4.8 million in the third quarter. In the third quarter of 2011, Georgia-Carolina made $2.8 million in non-interest income.

Assets have increased for the year, from $493.2 million to $515.8 million at the end of September.

Total deposits also grew since the beginning of the year, from $411.3 million to $425.2 million.

First Bank of Georgia has bank branches in Richmond, Columbia and McDuffie counties, and mortgage offices in Augusta and Savannah.

The company plans to open its seventh branch next year, which
will be on Washington Road in Evans.

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