Santa Cruz County Bank In The News
Banks that started up six years ago have had tough times, according to statistics Santa Cruz County Bank chairman George Gallucci cited for 100 stockholders at the annual meeting Tuesday at Bittersweet Bistro in Aptos.
"Of 83 banks started since February 2004, only 18 were profitable. We were one of those," Gallucci said. "Of those 83, only four have a cumulative profit. Your bank is one of those banks."
Banks that made loans to real estate developers who got caught in the housing market crash are putting aside money for losses instead of lending to jump-start the economy.
Santa Cruz County Bank doesn't have that problem.
In fact, the 7-year-old locally owned bank last month won a Lender Excellence Award from U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development.
Higher net interest income, office consolidation and employee attrition helped boost the bottom line for Santa Cruz County Bank which reported a leap in net revenue to $267,980 from just $22,509 a year ago in the same quarter.
First quarter numbers, from loans to deposits to assets and the total number of accounts, all grew compared to this time last year.
Julie Monet has put her heart into her career as a hair stylist and owner of her own business, developing a loyal following. Now 50, she's facing an uncertain future.
In 2007, she was diagnosed with degenerative disk disease, a condition accompanied by acute neck pain, and advised by her doctor to give up her salon and spa.
Everyone loves to hate the big banks these days. So much so that a national movement called Move Your Money, which encourages individuals to take their money out of our nation’s biggest banks and place it with community banks and credit unions, has enjoyed a groundswell of support since it came out a month ago. Even local banks have noticed.
“We’ve seen the number of accounts [go up] as a result of Move Your Money,” says Mary Anne Carson, marketing director for Santa Cruz County Bank. “It is really making a difference for us, and I think people can feel good about the fact that their funds are going to local banks that will be reinvested in their community’s economy.”
Fourth-quarter earnings improved at Santa Cruz County Bank compared to the third quarter, generating a year-end profit of $203,000. That represents a solid increase over 2008, when year-end profit was $17,000.
However, earnings at the 6-year-old locally owned bank have not rebounded to pre-recession levels.
Net income for the fourth quarter was $71,000 compared to $218,000 in that quarter in 2008. The decrease was due to a $450,000 increase in provision for loan losses.
The New Rules Project, in partnership with HuffPost's Move Your Money campaign, is using its Community Banking Initiative to get out the word that banking locally can put the power back in the hands of individuals and communities, rather than Wall Street's CEOs.
As more of us ditch the big banks in favor local banks and credit unions, we need to give thought to both the saving and lending sides of a bank. Each is crucial.
On the savings side, community-based financial institutions need our deposits much more than the big banks do. Big banks have access to other capital. While deposits account for 82% of the funds small banks have to work with, their share at the biggest banks is just 66% (and deposits made in the U.S. account for even less: just 39%).
Magazine honors local bank Santa Cruz County Bank received an honorable mention in the Western Banking magazine's 2009 Green Leaf Awards. The locally owned bank's environmental practices include remodeling its Santa Cruz office to meet the U.S. Green Building Council's standards for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification and securing certification of all seven offices from the Monterey Bay Area Green Business Program.Read the full story
The third-quarter profit at locally owned Santa Cruz County Bank was smaller than in the second quarter, but it was a big improvement compared to a year ago, when the bank bumped up its reserve for loan losses.
Net income after taxes totaled $42,872, down from $66,243 in the second quarter, and up from a loss of $580,620 in the third quarter of 2008 when the stock market sank.
Local wave rider encourages Santa Cruz to bank locally, save the world
Clad in a T-shirt, shorts and sandals, Kyle Thiermann is the kind of guy one might expect to run into on Pacific Avenue. His sun-bleached, sandy hair and quintessential Santa Cruz demeanor make even more sense when he reveals that he is a professional surfer. At 19 years old, it seems that a person in his position would have few worries outside of hitting Steamer Lane and devouring Zoccoli’s chicken pesto sandwiches (his favorite). But behind Thiermann’s blue eyes there lies a worldly passion, which extends far beyond the exhilaration of catching a perfect set down at Pleasure Point.