Originally created 07/24/99

Augusta-based bank posts record profits



Augusta-based Georgia Bank Financial Corp., the holding company for Georgia Bank & Trust Co., reported record second quarter earnings Friday.

The bank posted earnings of $878,000, or 48 cents per share, for the three months ending June 30, compared to $709,000, or 39 cents per share, for the same period in 1998.

This represents an earnings increase of 23.8 percent and a per-share increase of 23.1 percent.

The community bank's performance reflects growth in loans and interest income as well as an overall increase in market share, said Ronald L. Thigpen, executive vice president and chief operating officer.

"We're continuing to grow very profitably," he said.

At the end of the quarter the bank had total assets of $325.5 million and deposits of $265 million, a 16.9 percent increase and a 13.1 percent increase, respectively, from the same period the previous year.

Loans, which grew $6.8 million during the quarter, totaled $224 million.

Interest income, income from loans, was $3.3 million. Noninterest income, income from service charges, fees and loan sales, was $938,500.

The bank has never experienced a decrease in net income since its inception 10 years ago. It currently operates seven offices in metro Augusta.

The company's board of directors also announced a 15 percent stock dividend payable Aug. 28 to shareholders of record as of Aug. 6.

The return on assets for the six-month period was 1.07 percent. The return on equity for the same period was 11.37 percent. Georgia Bank Financial Corp. is traded on the OTC Bulletin Board.

Damon Cline covers business for The Augusta Chronicle. He can be reached at (706) 823-3486.