People's Bank reports slim $3,500 profit

People's Bank of Commerce reported a $3,500 net profit for the second quarter of 2008, compared to $138,000 in 2007. Earnings per share were less than 1 cent compared to 17 cents per share in the second quarter of 2007.

Nonetheless, Medford-based People's Bank said it remains the highest capitalized bank in Southern Oregon with capital exceeding 13.5 percent, despite earnings challenges caused by the real estate and housing slowdown.

The bank had earnings of $79,000 for the first six months of 2008, down 68 percent compared to $250,000 earned the first half of 2007. On a per-share basis, earnings through June were 9 cents compared to 29 cents in 2007.

The bank booked $116,000 as a loan loss provision and charged off $263,000 for non-performing loans for the first six months. People's Bank said 3.63 percent of its loans at the end of June were noncurrent, with payments trailing due dates. That's nearly half of the 6.07 percent logged on March 31.

Mortgage revenue for the six months rose 4 percent over 2007.

The bank also reported a quarterly cash dividend of 10 cents per share payable Sept. 1 to shareholders of record Aug. 15.

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