First Maryland posts gain Operating income up 15% in quarter

loan demand credited

July 23, 1998|By Bill Atkinson | Bill Atkinson,SUN STAFF

Fueled by strong demand for business and consumer loans, First Maryland Bancorp's operating income rose 15 percent in the second quarter before a $6.3 million gain on the sale of securities, the company said yesterday.

Baltimore-based First Maryland, which is owned by Allied Irish Banks PLC of Dublin, Ireland, made $41.2 million in the quarter that ended June 30, up from with $35.8 million for the comparable period a year earlier.

Scott Rankin, a bank analyst at Davy Stockbrokers in Dublin, said First Maryland's performance was in line with expectations.

"Looking at everything else, there are no real surprises," he said. "We like the bank. It is certainly a very valuable asset to AIB."

For the first six months of the year, First Maryland's operating income grew 15 percent to $80.2 million before profit from the sale of its consumer credit card portfolio and securities gains.

The company made $37.5 million on the sale of the credit card portfolio in February and $25.5 million in securities gains. Including these gains, the company's net income was $143.2 million for the six months.

Frank P. Bramble, First Maryland's president and chief executive, said earnings were fueled in part by strong growth in commercial and retail loans.

In the first six months of the year, business loans jumped 9.8 percent to $3.15 billion, and loans to consumers were up 7.5 percent to $2.8 billion.

First Maryland, which has 300 branches in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Washington, reported $17.1 billion in assets as of June 30, 52 percent more than in the same period a year earlier.

The jump in assets was fueled by its acquisition in July 1997 of Dauphin Deposit Corp. of Harrisburg, Pa.

Pub Date: 7/23/98

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