First Evanston Bancorp. 3Q earnings surge

Earnings of First Evanston Bancorp, Inc. for the first nine months of 2011 topped last year’s figures by  51 percent, the parent corporation of First Bank and Trust reported this week.

Net income for the company for the first nine months of the year amounted to $2,948,000, compared with $1,948,000 for the comparable period last year. Basic net income per share was $1.96, up 43 percent from $1.37 in 2010.

In a letter to stockholders, Robert R. Yohanon, the firm’s managing director and chief executive officer, noted that total assets, loans, and deposits all reached record highs at the end of the quarter on Sept. 30.

Assets stood at $651 million, compared with $599 million a year ago. Total loans, net of an allowance for loan losses, amounted to $479 million, compared with $429 million, and deposits reached $582 million, compared with $534 million.

First Bank continues to be the only bank on the North Shore and one of the few in the state of Illinois to hold a 5-star superior rating from BauerFinancial, Inc., Yohannon told stockholders. “Additionally, our general performance against both local and national peers is very favorable,” he said, “which has provided us with the ability to continue to attract new business and individual relationships.”

Yohannon expressed optimism for the bank’s prospects for 2012 and beyond, as the bank “continues to operate with very few problem loans, very strong liquidity and capital, and an excellent pipeline of prospective businesses.”

Chartered in 1995, the bank is headquartered in downtown Evanston and operates seven offices. It will be opening an eighth on Dec. 6 at the corner of Crawford  Avenue and Dempster Street in Skokie. The new branch was designed to meet the requirements of a LEED Gold Certification, meeting standards set by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio stations and business-oriented magazines.

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