Simmons First National Corporation announced January 22 that the net income available to common shareholders is $18.9 million, or $0.43 per diluted share, for the quarter that ended Dec. 31, 2017, compared to $27.0 million, or $0.85 per diluted share, for the same period in 2016.
Included in fourth quarter 2017 results was $14.2 million in merger-related and branch right-sizing costs, a $5 million donation to Simmons Foundation and a one-time tax adjustment of $11.5 million.
As a result of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” that was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017, the company was required to revalue its deferred tax assets and deferred tax liabilities to account for the future impact of lower corporate tax rates on these deferred amounts, according to a company news release.
The analysis resulted in a one-time non-cash charge to the income statement of $11.5 million.
Excluding the net after-tax impact of these items, core earnings were $42.0 million, or $0.97 per diluted share, for the quarter ended December 31, 2017, compared to $28.8 million, or $0.91 per diluted share, for the quarter ended December 31, 2016.
Year-to-date net income was $92.9 million, or $2.66 diluted earnings per share. Excluding the net after-tax merger-related and branch right-sizing costs, tax adjustment and the gain on sale of insurance lines recorded in the prior quarter, year-to-date core earnings were $119.0 million, or $3.41 diluted core earnings per share.
On Oct. 19, 2017, Simmons First National Corporation completed the acquisitions of Southwest Bancorp, Inc., headquartered in Stillwater, Oklahoma, including its wholly-owned bank subsidiary, Bank SNB, and First Texas BHC, Inc., headquartered in Ft. Worth, Texas, including its wholly-owned subsidiary, Southwest Bank.
The systems conversions are planned during the first half of 2018, at which time the subsidiary banks will be merged into Simmons Bank.
“We welcome our newest associates from Bank SNB and Southwest Bank and are pleased with our integration efforts thus far. We look forward to continued growth and profitability in their legacy markets,” said George A. Makris, Jr., chairman and CEO.
Makris continued, “The effect of the tax law changes has allowed us the opportunity to consider an increased investment in our associates which will include, among a variety of initiatives, an increase in the profit-sharing component of our 401(k) plan and increased consideration for our high-performing associates; an investment in technology of up to $100 million over 5 years to improve our delivery of products and services to our customers; an investment in our communities as evidenced by our $5 million contribution to our foundation to support CRA qualified community development grants throughout our footprint; and finally a strategy to provide a return on the investment of our shareholders through retention and deployment of additional capital to grow our business while at the same time increasing the dividend we distribute to our shareholders.
“These investments reflect our optimism for Simmons and we believe will help us achieve the growth potential we envision for our company Late last week we announced a two for one stock split which we believe will create investment opportunities for a wide variety of investors. Our retail ownership is approximately 50 percent, and we believe it is a valuable dynamic to have owners as customers and vice-versa. We also announced a 20 percent increase in our dividend over the previous quarter.”
Financial statements, including earnings per share as well as other share-related disclosures, reported after the stock split record date of Jan. 30, 2018, will include the impact of the stock split on all periods presented.