Apr 19, 2021 -
Ledyard Financial Group, Inc. (ticker symbol LFGP), the holding company for Ledyard National Bank, is proud to announce record earnings for the first quarter of 2021. Our focus continues to be strengthening our financial position, maintaining our strong liquidity position, and preserving core earnings. Our results demonstrate that our financial condition remains strong and that our core businesses continue to thrive in this prolonged difficult environment. As a community bank we continue to focus on our customers and their financial needs during these highly unusual times. We entered this crisis in a position of strength and remain focused on what we need to do to ensure we are able to support our core constituents. Net income for the quarter ended March 31, 2021, was $1,835,872 or $0.58 per share compared to $1,620,939 or $0.51 per share for the same period in 2020, an increase of $214,933 or 13%. The underlying results for the Company were extremely positive. We are optimistic that the worst of the pandemic is behind us. The Company is well positioned to navigate any difficulties that we may encounter in the future, and we remain focused on supporting our core businesses and executing on our strategic plan.
Total revenue for the quarter ended March 31, 2021, was $8,258,982 compared to $7,304,625 for the same period in 2020, for an increase of $954,357 or 13%. Net interest income for the quarter ended March 31, 2021, was $4,445,273 compared to $3,843,238 for the same period in 2020, for an increase of $602,035 or 16%. The increase in our net interest income was due primarily to the increase in investments and interest-bearing deposits and the ability to manage the cost of our deposits and borrowings.
Ledyard Financial Advisors, a division of Ledyard National Bank, reported revenue for the quarter ended March 31, 2021, of $3,080,256 compared to $2,933,686 for the same period in 2020, an increase of $146,570 or 5%. Assets under management ended the first quarter at $1.788 billion, an increase of approximately $329 million over the prior year and $79 million over December 31, 2020.
Non-interest expense for the quarter ended March 31, 2021, was $6,248,271 compared to $5,202,957 for the same period in 2020, an increase of $1,045,314 or 20%. The increase in non-interest expense relates to non-recurring recruitment expenses as well as salary and benefit expenses that were reinstituted in 2021, after having been discontinued in 2020 as part of our expense reduction program in response to the pandemic.
At March 31, 2021, the Company’s shareholders’ equity stood at $66.2 million compared to $58.5 million for the same period in 2020. All of the Company’s capital ratios are well in excess of the amount required by the Federal Reserve for a bank holding company to be considered “well capitalized” and we have significant levels of liquidity resources available to support our operations during these unusual times. At March 31, 2021, the Company’s book value per share stood at $19.93 compared to $18.00 for the same period in 2020.
Loans, net of the allowance for loan losses at March 31, 2021, were $364.7 million compared to $326.8 million for the same period last year, for an increase of $37.9 million or 12%. Included in this loan growth is $30.8 million of PPP loans originated as part of the CARES act. Total deposits at March 31, 2021, were $601.5 million compared to $394.6 million, an increase of $206.9 million or 53% from the same period last year. Included in this deposit growth is $67 million of brokered deposits, which provide funding at lower costs than current wholesale borrowing alternatives. Total assets of the Company were $693.9 million at March 31, 2021, an increase of $130.7 million over the prior year. In addition to the loan growth related to the CARES act, the balance sheet growth was due to investments purchased during the past year.
The Company provided $50,000 to the Allowance during the first quarter of 2021 compared to $250,000 in the comparable quarter in 2020. Net recoveries at March 31, 2021, were $30,331 compared to $6,119 for the comparable period in 2020. The total Allowance was $8.04 million at March 31, 2021, compared to $5.5 million at March 31, 2020. Total non-performing assets were $1.4 million at March 31, 2021, compared to $1.1 million for the comparable period in 2020.
The Company is pleased to announce it has been named one of the top 25 Bank Boards for Women by Bank Director, an information resource for directors and officers of financial companies. Kathy Underwood, President and CEO, stated, “We’re proud to be named to this exclusive list of banks. With eleven directors at Ledyard, I am very proud that six are women. Ledyard is dedicated to bringing diversity and inclusion on our board. We look at diversity in a number of ways including experience, age, ethnicity, geography and gender and are committed to ensuring that women are well represented in leadership roles throughout the bank. The diverse skills and experience of our teams foster innovation that will lead us successfully into the future.”
The Company’s annual meeting is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. on May 27, 2021, at Ledyard’s operations center located at 66 Benning Street, Suite 5, West Lebanon, New Hampshire. We are actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation and are sensitive to the public health and travel concerns of our shareholders. In the event the annual meeting will not be held in person, we will announce alternative arrangements for the meeting as promptly as practicable on our website.
Ledyard Financial Group, Inc., headquartered in Hanover, New Hampshire, is the holding company for Ledyard National Bank. Ledyard National Bank, founded in 1991, is a full-service community bank offering a broad range of banking, investment, and wealth management services.
Ledyard Financial Group, Inc. shares can be bought and sold through the NASD sanctioned “OTC Markets” under the trading symbol LFGP. Shares may be traded through an individual’s broker. For more information, please refer to the “Investor Relations” section of the bank’s website or contact the Company’s CFO, Gregory D. Steverson.