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Santa Cruz County Bank posts record profit for 2015

January 28, 2016

By Jondi Gumz — Santa Cruz Sentinel

SANTA CRUZ — Locally owned Santa Cruz County Bank posted a profit of $1.5 million for the fourth quarter, up 14 percent from a year ago, and a record $8.9 million profit for the fiscal year, up 24 percent from the year before.

Deposits grew to $461 million, up 11 percent from a year ago.

Loans grew to $358 million, up 13 percent from a year ago.

Three weeks ago, Stewart Peterson, owner of Coastwide Environmental Technologies, paid off the 10-year SBA loan he got from Santa Cruz County Bank to buy the contracting business, which operates from San Francisco to San Luis Obispo removing asbestos and lead.

He tackled a big project at UC Santa Cruz, the dorm floors at Porter College, where his weekly payroll for a crew of 50 to 60 totaled $190,000, a job he said he couldn’t have completed without a $400,000 line of credit from the bank.

Last year, his company was the lead contractor for abatement for UCSC’s Merrill College dorm remodel.

Peterson is hiring and will provide training. He said the crew of 35 to 40 in the winter grows to 75 in the summer.

“We are in the best construction environment in the country,” he said.

Santa Cruz County Bank, which will mark 12 years in business in February, is the top lender for U.S. Department of Agriculture in California with 36 business and industry loans totaling $51 million and the top SBA lender in Santa Cruz County.

Non-interest income declined by $204,000 compared to a year ago as the bank retained SBA loans for future earnings.

There were no nonperforming loans and no loans past due.

Return on average equity for 2015 was 13.06 percent.

Shareholders’ equity increased to $44 million, up 14 percent during the year.

Earnings per share totaled $2.53 in 2015, up from $2.05 in 2014.

Book value per share was $20.47, increasing by $2.43.

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