SUMMIT, N.J., Hilltop Community Bancorp, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: HTBC), the holding company for Hilltop Community Bank (the Bank) today reported net income of $795,000 ($0.48 per share, basic, and $0.43 per share, diluted) for the year ended December 31, 2004. Net income for the previous year was $457,000 ($0.33 per share, basic, and $0.32 per share, diluted). Net income for 2004 included tax benefits totaling $647,000 related to the recovery of a valuation allowance on the Bank's deferred tax asset.
Operations in the fourth quarter of 2004 resulted in a loss of $113,000 ($0.07 per share, basic, and $0.06 per share, diluted). The quarter was negatively impacted by a $256,000 loss related to the restructuring of the Bank's investment portfolio. In the previous year, fourth quarter income was $212,000 ($0.13 per share, basic and diluted).
Total assets were $129.7 million at December 31, 2004, an increase of 6.1% for the year. Gross loans increased $15.4 million, or 29.9%, in 2004, and showed particularly strong growth in the fourth quarter when this asset category increased by $6 million. There were no delinquent loans in the portfolio at the end of the year, and the loan loss reserve amounted to 1.32% of total loans.
Chairman of the Board Richard D. Wellbrock and President & CEO Mortimer J. O'Shea commented: " We are concluding a year of tremendous progress for Hilltop which will position us well for the future. The formation of the holding company, the addition of our Madison branch, the consolidation of office space for three key departments, the expansion of our lending team and the upgrading of technology were important achievements in 2004. We begin the new year focused on new business development and we are optimistic that Hilltop will continue to compete effectively in the markets which we serve."
Hilltop Community Bancorp, Inc. is the parent bank holding company for Hilltop Community Bank. Hilltop Community Bank is a New Jersey state-chartered commercial bank which commenced operations in February 2000. The Bank operates as a locally headquartered, community oriented bank engaged in a general commercial banking business. The Bank has offices in Summit, Berkeley Heights and Madison, and administrative offices in New Providence. The service area includes surrounding communities in Union, Essex, Morris and Somerset Counties.
The foregoing contains forward statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are not historical facts and include expressions about management's confidence and strategies and management's expectations about new and existing programs and products, relationships, opportunities, technology and market conditions. Such forward-looking statements involve certain risks and uncertainties. These include, but are not limited to, the direction of movements in interest rates, the possibility of disruption in credit markets, successful implementation and integration of acquisitions, the effects of economic conditions and the impact of legal and regulatory barriers and structures. Actual results may differ from such forward-looking statements. The Bank assumes no obligation for updating any such forward-looking statements at any time.