July 18--The holding companies for two of the largest Connecticut-based banks on Thursday both reported earnings increases for the second quarter of this year.
Bridgeport-based People's United Financial Inc., which is the holding company for People's United Bank, saw second-quarter earnings increase 16.4 percent to $72.3 million, or 24 cents per share. That's up from $62.1 million, or 20 cents per share, during the same period in 2013.
Waterbury-based Webster Financial Corp. reported more modest gains, with earnings increasing by 3 percent to $45.21 million, or 50 cents per share. That was up from $43.73 million, or 48 cents per share, during the second quarter last year.
Jack Barnes, president and chief executive officer of People's United, said the bank's second quarter results "demonstrate continued momentum in growing our businesses."
"This quarter we experienced annualized deposit growth of 7 percent and loan growth of 13 percent, reflecting our strong commitment to fostering customer relationships," Barnes said in a statement.
James Smith, Webster's chairman and chief executive officer, said the bank's second-quarter gains were driven by loan growth across a variety of sectors.
"Credit quality continues to improve as the economy gathers strength, and disciplined expense management contributed to Webster's thirteenth consecutive quarter of positive operating leverage," Smith said in a statement. He later told analysts that business loans, as a percentage of the bank's total loan base, have increased from 46 percent three years ago to over 55 percent now.
Webster Bank announced its earnings prior to the opening of U.S. financial markets Thursday, while People's United reported its second-quarter financial results after the markets closed for the day.
Webster Bank's stock, which trades under the symbol WBS on the NASDAQ exchange, lost $1.31 in trading Thursday to close at $29.43. The stock's trading volume Thursday was nearly 46 percent higher than the average volume for the past 90 days.
People's United stock, which also trades on the NASDAQ under the symbol PBCT, lost 12 cents in trading Thursday to close at $14.79. Nearly 4.76 million share of the bank's stock was traded Thursday, nearly 54 percent higher than the average volume for the past 90 days.
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