Simmons announces 4th quarter earnings

Simmons First National Corp. Thursday announced net income of $6.3 million and diluted earnings per share of $0.37 for the quarter that ended Dec. 31, 2011.

“Because the fourth quarter of 2010 included a considerable non-core net gain, there is a significant variance when comparing quarter to quarter earnings results,” J. Thomas May, Chairman and CEO, said.

“Obviously, there is a lot of noise in our fourth quarter comparative results due to the Oct. 15, 2010, FDIC-assisted acquisition in Kansas,” he said. “After taxes, the combined fourth quarter 2010 non-recurring items from that acquisition contributed $9.7 million to net income, or $0.56 to diluted earnings per share. After adjusting for the acquisition, comparable core earnings for the fourth quarter 2010 were $6.9 million, or $0.40 diluted core earnings per share.”

For the year ending Dec. 31, net income was $25.4 million, or $1.47 diluted earnings per share, compared to $37.1 million, or $2.15 diluted earnings per share for the same period in 2010.

“Again,” May said, “GAAP results include non-recurring items from our 2010 acquisitions, along with other one-time income/expense items, which can distort comparative operating results. Normalizing for the non-recurring items in 2010 and 2011, core earnings for the year ended Dec. 31, 2011, were $25.0 million, or $1.45 core earnings per share, compared to $26.0 million, or $1.51 core earnings per share.”

Total assets were $3.3 billion at Dec. 31, 2011, unchanged from Dec. 31, 2010.