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American Riviera Bank Sees 59% Jump in Quarter Profit

Santa Barbara bank has reported six consecutive quarters of profitability

American Riviera Bank (OTC BB: ARBV.OB) announced Thursday that unaudited net income of $364,000 (14 cents per share) for the quarter ended March 31, a 59 percent increase in profit from the $228,000 (9 cents per share) for the comparable 2010 quarter.

American Riviera Bank, 1033 Anacapa St., has now reported six consecutive quarters of profitability.

The bank has experienced consistent growth in core deposits, reporting $93 million in core deposits at March 31, a 10 percent increase since March 31, 2010.

The bank continues to attract new customers, with a 22 percent increase in the number of non-time accounts since March 31, 2010, and nearly 150 new deposit accounts opened in the first quarter of 2011. Non-interest bearing checking accounts averaged $18 million for the quarter ending March 31, an increase of $5 million, or 36 percent, from the comparable 2010 quarter.

“The customer growth is directly attributable to our dedication to personal service and quality products delivered with state-of-the art technology,” president and CEO Jeff DeVine said. “With our recent recognition by The Findley Reports as the only bank in Santa Barbara to be commended for financial performance in 2010, clients know their money is safe.”

The bank’s net interest margin remains strong and has benefited from the increased core deposit mix. The bank reported a 4.25 percent net interest margin for the quarter ended March 31. Due to normal loan payment amortization and targeted construction loan payoffs in conjunction with limited new loan demand from qualified borrowers, loan balances outstanding at March 31 were $90 million, a $4 million decrease from Dec. 31, 2010.

Management and the Board of Directors believe the allowance for loan losses at 2.89 percent of total loans is adequate at March 31, and therefore did not record any loan loss provision in the first quarter of 2011.

The bank has $139 million in total assets and maintains a strong capital position with Tier 1 Capital to total assets exceeding 13 percent as of March 31, well above the regulatory guideline of 5 percent for well-capitalized institutions.

— Michelle Martinich is senior vice president and chief financial officer for American Riviera Bank.

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