News Column

RIVERSIDE: Altura reports $3.04 million 1Q net income

April 29, 2014

By Debra Gruszecki, The Press-Enterprise, Riverside, Calif.



April 29--Altura Credit Union, for the period ending March 30, reported net income of $3.04 million on total assets of $730.9 million.

That compares with net income of $4.9 million on total assets of $718.1 million for the same quarter in 2013, according to the Riverside-based financial institution.

Quarter-over-quarter, net income is down 38.8 percent. Total assets are up 1.7 percent.

The credit union, which has about 85,500 members who live, work or attend school in Riverside and San Diego counties or in select cities of San Bernardino and Orange counties, reported net income of $7.03 million on assets of $708.2 million from January through March 2012.

Mark Hawkins, Altura CEO, said in a Monday, April 28,statement that the region has been challenged by a "still higher-than-average" local unemployment rate.

Even so, Hawkins said, Altura has had 12 consecutive months of net gains as the local economy continues slowly toward recovery.

"We are seeing quite a bit of new car lending and also the return of some home equity lending," Hawkins said, but Altura members are still hesitant about borrowing, a major source of Altura's revenue.

Altura members, like most consumers, are continuing to pay down existing debt, Hawkins said. "Year-over-year, loan balances are down 2 percent," he said, the smallest decline Altura has had in seven years.

A spurt in loan applications in March and April has helped stem that decline, Hawkins said, noting: "We are encouraged by this recent lending activity and anticipate continued improvement."

The credit quality of borrowers was described in the Altura report as excellent; and loan delinquency was the lowest it's been in seven years. Delinquent loans fell to 0.76 percent, compared with 1.23 percent for the same period in 2013.

Other reasons given by Hawkins for a decline in net income for the first quarter from the same period in 2013 were rising operating and benefit costs, and the addition of 14 employees -- mostly in lending and member contact positions

"Overall costs were up about 2.5 percent over budget projections, which squeezed our bottom line this quarter," he said.

Contact Debra Gruszecki at 951-368-9423 or dgruszecki@pe.com

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(c)2014 The Press-Enterprise (Riverside, Calif.)

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Source: Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA)


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