Geography Likely an Important Factor in Bank Director Magazine’s 2008 Bank Performance Scorecard

New York – January 29, 2009 – Bank Director magazine recently announced in its first quarter issue the results of its fourth annual Bank Performance Scorecard. The Scorecard is based on measurement criteria and analysis compiled by Sandler O’Neill & Partners L.P., a New York based investment banking firm that specializes in the financial services industry. The institutions featured in the Top 150 Performers list have maintained top standing in good and bad times, and have assets of $3 billion or more.

The top performers on the 2008 ranking managed to avoid the kind of high-risk lending – particularly construction lending tied to the boom in new residential housing – which has been widely blamed for the financial industry meltdown. Instead, these high achievers have focused more on loans to businesses, corporations, and individuals with solid credit histories.

“For the most part, these companies did not get caught up in the U.S. housing boom,” says Jack Milligan, associate publisher at Bank Director. “They all tend to be well run banks that have strong credit cultures and lots of capital, and they didn’t fall prey to the housing market’s bubble-mania.”

This year, Glacier Bancorp ranked No. 1 with $5.0 billion in assets and 94 branches located in Idaho, Montana (where it’s based), Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. Although Glacier did not score higher than ninth in any of the Scorecard’s measurement categories, it ultimately ranked highest overall simply by doing a superior job in every category. Having acquired 17 banks in the past 20 years, Glacier has, in sharp contrast to the mass firings consistent with most bank mergers, allowed its subsidiaries to continue to operate autonomously and has instead chosen to make subtle, internal changes. 

The top 10 performers in the 2008 Scorecard are:

  1. Glacier Bancorp – Montana
  2. First Financial Bankshrs – Texas
  3. SVB Financial Group – California
  4. Bank of Hawaii Corp. – Hawaii
  5. Westamerica Bancorp. – California
  6. Capital One Financial Corp. – Virginia
  7. Commerce Bancshares – Missouri
  8. Hancock Holding Co. – Mississippi
  9. State Street Corp. – Massachusetts
  10. Republic Bancorp – Kentucky

A complete list of the Top 150 Performers can be seen in the 2009 first quarter issue of Bank Director and at {CCM:BASE_URL}/issues/2009_1/.

About the Bank Performance Scorecard
The Bank Director Performance Scorecard is comprised of six performance categories that measure profitability, capitalization, and asset quality. The Scorecard gives the two profitability metrics a full weighing in the final score for each institution. The other four metrics are given a half weighing in the final tally. The Scorecard was developed in consultation with Sandler O’Neill, which also performed all of the necessary calculations using publicly available data.

About Bank Director
Bank Director is the leading information resource for senior officers and directors of financial institutions, credit unions, insurance companies and investment advisors. The quarterly publication provides readers with the tools necessary to successfully handle the governance challenges impacting boards including mergers and acquisitions, retail strategies, compensation and technology. Each issue, also, features insightful commentary from former FDIC chairman Bill Seidman. Since its inception in 1991, Bank Director has become recognized as the essential resource for top decision makers in the financial services industry. For more information, visit www.bankdirector.com

Jonathan Hartman