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Section 1: 10-K (10-K)

ck0001437958-10k_20181231.htm

 

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 10-K

 

(Mark One)

   ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018

 

or

 

    TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the transition period from _____ to _____

 

Commission file number:   001-38589

COASTAL FINANCIAL CORPORATION

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Washington

 

56-2392007

(State or other jurisdiction of

incorporation or organization)

 

(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)

5415 Evergreen Way, Everett, Washington

 

98203

(Address of principal executive offices)

 

(Zip Code)

 

(425) 257-9000

(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

 

Common Stock, no par value per share

 

The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC

Title of Class

 

Name of each exchange on which registered

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. YES     NO

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Act. YES     NO

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant: (l) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. YES     NO

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (Section 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). YES     NO

Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (Section 229.405) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K.

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, smaller reporting company or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of, “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer

 

 

Accelerated filer

 

Non-Accelerated filer

  

 

Smaller Reporting Company

 

Emerging Growth Company

 

 

 

 

 

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.    

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). YES      NO

The aggregate market value of the voting and non-voting common equity held by non-affiliates as of June 30, 2018 was $28.1 million.  The number of shares outstanding of the registrant’s common stock as of March 27, 2019 was 11,902,715.

 DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

Portions of the Registrant’s Proxy Statement for the 2019 Annual Meeting of Stockholders are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Form 10-K

 


 


 

INDEX

 

 

 

 

 

Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part I

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Item 1

 

Business

 

5

Item 1A

 

Risk Factors

 

25

Item 1B

 

Unresolved Staff Comments

 

40

Item 2

 

Properties

 

40

Item 3

 

Legal Proceedings

 

40

Item 4

 

Mine Safety Disclosures

 

40

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part II

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Item 5

 

Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

 

41

Item 6

 

Selected Consolidated Financial and Other Data

 

42

Item 7

 

Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Operations

 

46

Item 7A

 

Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

 

75

Item 8

 

Financial Statements and Supplementary Data

 

75

Item 9

 

Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure

 

75

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part III

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Item 10

 

Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance

 

76

Item 11

 

Executive Compensation

 

76

Item 12

 

Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters

 

77

Item 13

 

Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence

 

78

Item 14

 

Principal Accountant Fees and Services

 

78

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part IV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Item 15

 

Exhibits and Financial Statement Schedules

 

79

Item 16

 

Form 10-K Summary

 

81

 

 

 

 

 

Signatures

 

 

 

82

 

 

 

 


 

CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This report contains forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements reflect our current views with respect to, among other things, future events and our financial performance. Any statements about our management’s expectations, beliefs, plans, predictions, forecasts, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance are not historical facts and may be forward-looking. These statements are often, but not always, made through the use of words or phrases such as “anticipate,” “believes,” “can,” “could,” “may,” “predicts,” “potential,” “should,” “will,” “estimate,” “plans,” “projects,” “continuing,” “ongoing,” “expects,” “intends” and similar words or phrases. Any or all of the forward-looking statements in this report may turn out to be inaccurate. The inclusion of forward-looking information in this report should not be regarded as a representation by us or any other person that the future plans, estimates or expectations contemplated by us will be achieved. We have based these forward-looking statements largely on our current expectations and projections about future events and financial trends that we believe may affect our financial condition, results of operations, business strategy and financial needs. Our actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements as a result of several factors more fully described under the caption “Item 1A: Risk Factors” and elsewhere in this report, as well as the following factors:

 

our expected future financial results;

 

the overall health of the local and national real estate market;

 

the credit risk associated with our loan portfolio, and specifically with our commercial real estate loans;

 

business and economic conditions generally and in the financial services industry, nationally and within our market area;

 

our ability to maintain an adequate level of allowance for loan losses;

 

our ability to successfully manage liquidity risk;

 

our ability to implement our growth strategy and manage costs effectively;

 

the composition of our senior leadership team and our ability to attract and retain key personnel;

 

our ability to raise additional capital to implement our business plan;

 

changes in market interest rates and impacts of such changes on our profits and business;

 

the occurrence of fraudulent activity, breaches or failures of our information security controls or cybersecurity-related incidents;

 

interruptions involving our information technology and telecommunications systems or third-party servicers;

 

our ability to maintain our reputation;

 

increased competition in the financial services industry;

 

regulatory guidance on commercial lending concentrations;

 

the effectiveness of our risk management framework;

 

the costs and obligations associated with being a public company;

 

the commencement and outcome of litigation and other legal proceedings and regulatory actions against us or to which we may become subject;

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the extensive regulatory framework that applies to us;

 

the impact of recent and future legislative and regulatory changes and other changes in banking, securities and tax laws and regulations, and their application by our regulators;

 

fluctuations in the value of the securities held in our securities portfolio;

 

governmental monetary and fiscal policies;

 

material weaknesses in our internal control over financial reporting; and

 

our success at managing the risks involved in the foregoing items.

The foregoing factors should not be construed as exhaustive and should be read together with the other cautionary statements included in this report. If one or more events related to these or other risks or uncertainties materialize, or if our underlying assumptions prove to be incorrect, actual results may differ materially from what we anticipate. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Further, any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which the statement is made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

 

 

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PART I

Item 1.

Business

Our Company

Coastal Financial Corporation (the “Company”) is a bank holding company that operates through our wholly owned subsidiary, Coastal Community Bank (the “Bank’). We are headquartered in Everett, Washington, which by population is the largest city in, and the county seat of, Snohomish County. We focus on providing a wide range of banking products and services to consumers and small to medium sized businesses in the broader Puget Sound region in the state of Washington. We currently operate 14 full-service banking locations, 11 of which are located in Snohomish County, where we are the largest community bank by deposit market share, and three of which are located in neighboring counties (one in King County and two in Island County). As of December 31, 2018, we had total assets of $952. 1 million, total loans of $767.9 million, total deposits of $803.6 million and total shareholders’ equity of $109.2 million.

On July 20, 2018, the Company completed its initial public offering of 2,577,500 shares of common stock, for approximate net proceeds of $33,243,000 after deducting underwriting discounts, commissions, and offering expenses.

Our executive offices are located at 5415 Evergreen Way, Everett, Washington 98203 and our telephone number is (425) 257-9000. Our website address is www.coastalbank.com. Information on our website should not be considered a part of this report.

Throughout this report, references to “we,” “us” or “our” refer to the Company or the Bank, or both, as the context indicates.

Our Markets

We define our market broadly as the Puget Sound region in the state of Washington, which encompasses the Seattle MSA, the metropolitan areas of Olympia, Bremerton and Mount Vernon, and Island County. The Seattle MSA includes Snohomish County (which contains the city of Everett), King County (which contains the cities of Seattle and Bellevue) and Pierce County (which contains the city of Tacoma). The Puget Sound region, which comprises over 60% of the population of the state of Washington as well as the number of businesses located therein, according to data obtained through S&P Global, is a growing market, currently with a population of approximately 4.7 million, over 178,000 businesses and $115 billion of deposits.

We are the largest locally headquartered bank by deposit market share in Snohomish County, according to data from the FDIC as of June 30, 2018, at which date we had a five percent deposit market share in Snohomish County. We aim to continuously enhance our customer base, increase loans and deposits and expand our overall market share in Snohomish County. In light of our market position and our business strategy, we do not regularly compete for commercial or retail deposits in the city of Seattle, and we believe this strategic decision has enabled us to generate low cost core deposits to fund our loan growth.

Our Banking Services

Lending Activities

We focus primarily on commercial lending, with an emphasis on commercial real estate. We offer a variety of loans to business owners, including commercial and industrial loans and commercial real estate loans secured by owner-occupied commercial properties. We also offer non-owner occupied commercial real estate loans, multi-family loans, and construction and development loans to investors and developers. To a lesser extent, we also offer residential real estate loans and consumer loans.

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Commercial and Industrial Loans. We make commercial and industrial loans, including term loans, Small Business Administration (SBA) loans, commercial lines of credit, working capital loans, equipment financing, borrowing base loans, and other loan products, that are underwritten on the basis of the borrower’s ability to service the debt from income. We take as collateral a lien on general business assets including, among other things, available real estate, accounts receivable, inventory and equipment and generally obtain a personal guaranty from the borrower or principal. Our commercial lines of credit typically have a term of one year and have variable interest rates that adjust monthly based on the prime rate. Other commercial and industrial loans generally have fixed interest rates and terms that typically range from one to five years depending on factors such as the type and size of the loan, the financial strength of the borrower/guarantor and the age, type and value of the collateral. Terms greater than five years may be appropriate in some circumstances, based upon the useful life of the underlying asset being financed or if some form of credit enhancement, such as an SBA guarantee, is obtained. As of December 31, 2018, we had $90.4 million of commercial and industrial loans. These loans had a weighted average maturity of approximately 3.4 years.

We participate in the SBA 7(a) program in order to meet the needs of our small business community. As an approved participant in the SBA Preferred Lender’s Program, we enable our clients to obtain SBA loans without being subject to the potentially lengthy SBA approval process necessary for lenders that are not SBA Preferred Lenders. The SBA’s 7(a) program provides up to a 75% guaranty for loans greater than $150,000. For loans $150,000 or less, the program provides up to an 85% guaranty. The maximum 7(a) loan amount is $5 million. The guaranty is conditional and covers a portion of the risk of payment default by the borrower, but not the risk of improper closing and servicing by the lender. As such, prudent underwriting and closing processes are essential to effective utilization of the 7(a) program. We typically sell in the secondary market the SBA-guaranteed portion (generally 75% of the principal balance) of the SBA loans we originate. As of December 31, 2018, we had $18.0 million of SBA loans in our portfolio, of which $2.9 million was guaranteed by the SBA.

Commercial and industrial loans are often larger and involve greater risks than other types of lending. Because payments on commercial loans are often dependent on the operating cash flows of the borrower’s business, repayment of these loans is often more sensitive to adverse conditions in the general economy, which in turn increases repayment risk. We also face the risk that losses incurred on a small number of commercial loans could have a material adverse impact on our financial condition and results of operations due to the larger average size of commercial loans as compared with other loans, such as residential loans, as well as collateral that is generally less readily marketable than collateral for consumer loans, such as residential real estate and automobiles.

Commercial Real Estate. We make commercial mortgage loans collateralized by owner-occupied and non-owner-occupied real estate, as well as multi-family residential loans. Loans secured by owner-occupied real estate comprised 38.4% of our commercial real estate portfolio at December 31, 2018. The real estate securing our existing commercial real estate loans includes a wide variety of property types, such as manufacturing and processing facilities, business parks, warehouses, retail centers, convenience stores and gas stations, hotels and motels, office buildings, mixed-use residential and commercial, and other properties. We originate both fixed- and adjustable-rate loans with terms up to 20 years. Fixed-rate loans typically amortize over a 10-to-25 year period with balloon payments at the end of five to ten years. Adjustable-rate loans are generally based on the prime rate and adjust with the prime rate or are based on term equivalent Federal Home Loan Bank rates. At December 31, 2018, approximately 40.8% of the commercial real estate loan portfolio consisted of fixed rate loans. Loan amounts generally do not exceed 75% of the lesser of the appraised value or the purchase price.

We make loans under the SBA 504 program to small businesses to provide funding for the purchase of real estate. Under this program, we provide up to 90% financing of the total purchase cost, represented by two loans to the borrower. The first lien loan is generally a long-term, fully amortizing, fixed-rate loan made in the amount of 50% of the total purchase cost. The second lien loan is a short-term, interest only, adjustable rate loan made in the amount of 40% of the total purchase cost, which is generally paid off within three to six months after full receipt of loan proceeds from a certified development corporation that provides long-term financing directly to the borrower. At December 31, 2018, we held $25.3 million in first lien SBA 504 loans.

Our multi-family residential loan portfolio is comprised of loans secured by apartment buildings, residential mixed-use buildings and, to a lesser extent, senior living centers.

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Commercial real estate lending with respect non-owner occupied properties typically involves higher loan principal amounts and the repayment is dependent, in large part, on sufficient income from the properties securing the loans to cover operating expenses and debt service. We require our commercial real estate loans to investors to be secured by well-managed properties with adequate margins and generally obtain a guaranty from responsible parties.

Construction, Land and Land Development Loans. We make loans to established builders to construct residential properties, loans to developers of commercial real estate investment properties and residential developments and, to a lesser extent, loans to individual clients for construction of single family homes in our market areas. We also make loans for the acquisition of undeveloped land. Construction loans are typically disbursed as construction progresses and carry either fixed or variable interest rates. Our construction and development loans typically have terms that range from six months to two years depending on factors such as the type and size of the development and the financial strength of the borrower/guarantor. Loans are typically structured with an interest only construction period and mature at the completion of construction.

Construction and land development loans typically involve more risk than other types of lending products because repayment of these loans is dependent, in part, on the sale or refinance of the ultimate project rather than the ability of the borrower or guarantor to repay principal and interest. Moreover, these loans are typically based on future estimates of value and economic circumstances, which may differ from actual results or be affected by unforeseen events. If the actual circumstances differ from the estimates made at the time of approval of these loans, we face the risk of having inadequate security for the repayment of the loan. Further, if we foreclose on the loan, we may be required to fund additional amounts to complete the project and may have to hold the property for an unspecified period of time while we attempt to dispose of it.

Residential Real Estate. We originate adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, loans for our portfolio and operate as a mortgage broker for mortgage lenders we have agreements with for customers who want a 15-year to 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loan. Our ARM loans typically do not meet the guidelines for sale in the secondary market due to characteristics of the property, the loan terms or exceptions from agency underwriting guidelines, which enables us to earn a higher interest rate. We also originate home equity lines of credit and home equity term loans for our portfolio. Home equity lines of credit have variable interest rates, while home equity term loans are fixed for up to 5-1/2 years but can be amortized up to a maximum of 180 months with a balloon payment at maturity.

We purchase residential mortgages originated by other financial institutions to hold for investment with the intent to diversify our residential mortgage loan portfolio, meet certain regulatory requirements and increase our interest income. These loans purchased typically have a fixed rate with a term of 15 to 30 years, and are collateralized by one-to-four family residential real estate. We have a defined set of credit guidelines that we use when evaluating these loans. Although purchased loans were originated and underwritten by another institution, our mortgage, credit, and compliance departments conduct an independent review of each underlying loan that includes re-underwriting each of these loans to our credit and compliance standards. As of December 31 2018, we held $38.8 million in purchased residential real estate mortgage loans.

Like our commercial real estate loans, our residential real estate loans are secured by real estate, the value of which may fluctuate significantly over a short period of time as a result of market conditions in the area in which the real estate is located. Adverse developments affecting real estate values in our market areas could therefore increase the credit risk associated with these loans, impair the value of property pledged as collateral on loans, and affect our ability to sell the collateral upon foreclosure without a loss or additional losses.

Consumer and Other Loans. We make a variety of loans to individuals for personal and household purposes, including auto, boat and recreational vehicle loans and secured term loans. We also offer unsecured lines of credit including overdraft protection. Consumer loans are underwritten based on the individual borrower’s income, current debt level, past credit history and the value of any available collateral. The terms of consumer loans vary considerably based upon the loan type, nature of collateral and size of the loan.

Consumer loans typically have shorter terms, lower balances, higher yields and higher risks of default than residential real estate mortgage loans. Consumer loan collections are dependent on the borrower’s continuing financial stability and are therefore more likely to be affected by adverse personal circumstances, such as a loss of employment, divorce, or unexpected medical costs.

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Credit Administration and Loan Review

We control credit risk both through disciplined underwriting of each transaction, as well as active credit management processes and procedures to manage risk and minimize loss throughout the life of a loan. We seek to maintain a broadly diversified loan portfolio in terms of type of customer, type of loan product, geographic area and industries in which our business customers are engaged. We have developed tailored underwriting criteria and credit management processes for each of the various loan product types we offer our customers.

Underwriting. In evaluating each potential loan relationship, we adhere to a disciplined underwriting evaluation process that includes the following:

 

understanding the customer’s financial condition and ability to repay the loan;

 

verifying that the primary and secondary sources of repayment are adequate in relation to the amount and structure of the loan;

 

observing appropriate loan-to-value guidelines for collateral secured loans;

 

maintaining our targeted levels of diversification for the loan portfolio, both as to type of borrower and type of collateral; and

 

ensuring that each loan is properly documented with perfected liens on collateral.

Loan Approval Authority. Our lending activities follow written, non-discriminatory, underwriting standards and loan origination procedures established by our board of directors and management. We have established several levels of lending authority that have been delegated by the board of directors to our management credit committee, Chief Executive Officer, Chief Credit Officer and other personnel in accordance with our loan policy. Authority limits are based on the total exposure of the borrower and are conditioned on the loan conforming to the policies contained in the loan policy. Any loan policy exceptions are fully disclosed to the approving authority.

Ongoing Credit Risk Management. In addition to the tailored underwriting process described above, we perform ongoing risk monitoring and review processes for credit exposures. Although we grade and classify our loans internally, we engage an independent third-party professional firm to perform regular loan reviews and confirm loan classifications. We strive to identify potential problem loans early in an effort to aggressively seek resolution of these situations before they create a loss. We record any necessary charge-offs promptly and maintain adequate allowance levels for probable loan losses incurred in the loan portfolio.

In general, whenever a particular loan or overall borrower relationship is downgraded from a pass grade to a watch or substandard grade based on one or more standard loan grading factors, our relationship manager (who is typically the loan officer) and credit team members engage in active evaluation of the asset to determine the appropriate resolution strategy. Management regularly reviews the status of the watch list and classified assets portfolio as well as the larger credits in the portfolio.

Concentrations of Credit Risk

Most of our lending activity is conducted with businesses and individuals in our market area. As of December 31, 2018, approximately 88% of the 1-4 family loans in our loan portfolio (measured by dollar amount) were secured by real estate, or made to borrowers who live or conduct business, in the Puget Sound region. As a result, a substantial majority of our loan portfolio is dependent upon the economic environment of the Puget Sound region. We have a limited number of loans secured by properties located outside of the Puget Sound region, most of which are made to borrowers who are well-known to us.

Our total non-owner-occupied commercial real estate loans, including loans secured by apartment buildings, investor commercial real estate, and construction and land loans represented 333.0% of the Bank’s total risk-based capital at December 31, 2018. Interagency guidance on commercial real estate concentrations describe sound risk management practices, which include board and management oversight, portfolio management, management information systems, market analysis, portfolio stress testing and sensitivity analysis, credit underwriting standards, and credit risk review functions. We believe we have adequately implemented these practices in order to monitor concentrations in commercial real estate in our loan portfolio.

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Lending Limits

Our lending activities are subject to a variety of lending limits imposed by federal law. In general, the Bank is subject to a legal lending limit on loans to a single borrower based on the Bank’s capital level. The dollar amounts of the Bank’s lending limit increases or decreases as the Bank’s capital increases or decreases. The Bank is able to sell participations in its larger loans to other financial institutions, which allows it to better manage the risk and exposure involved with larger loans and to meet the lending needs of its customers requiring extensions of credit in excess of Bank or regulatory limits.

The Bank’s legal lending limit as of December 31, 2018 on loans to a single borrower was 20% of capital and surplus, or $22.7 million.

Our loan policies provide general guidelines for loan-to-value ratios that restrict the size of loans to a maximum percentage of the value of the collateral securing the loans, which percentage varies by the type of collateral. Our internal loan-to-value limitations also follow all limits established by applicable law.

Deposit Products

Our deposits serve as the primary funding source for lending, investing and other general banking purposes. We provide a full range of deposit products, including a variety of checking and savings accounts, time deposits, and money market accounts. We also provide a wide range of deposit services, including debit cards, remote deposit capture, online banking, mobile banking, and direct deposit services. We also offer business accounts and cash management services, including business checking and savings accounts and treasury services. We solicit deposits through our relationship-driven team of dedicated and accessible bankers and through community-focused marketing. We emphasize obtaining deposit relationships at loan origination. Our focus on relationship banking combined with our robust business banking services has led to approximately 76.8% of our loan customers having deposit relationships with us as of December 31, 2018.

Investments

As of December 31, 2018, the fair value of our investment portfolio, which represented 4.0% of assets, totaled $37.9 million and had an average effective yield of 1.56% and an estimated duration of approximately 4.7 years. The primary objectives of the investment portfolio are to provide a source of liquidity and provide collateral that can be readily sold or pledge for public deposits or other business purposes. At December 31, 2018, 87.8% of our investment portfolio consisted of U.S. Treasury securities. The remainder of our securities portfolio is invested in U.S. Government agency securities, agency collateralized mortgage obligations and mortgage-backed securities, and municipal bonds. We regularly evaluate the composition of our investment portfolio as the interest rate yield curve changes and may sell or pledge investment securities from time to time to adjust our exposure to interest rates or to provide liquidity to meet loan demand.

Competition

We operate in a highly competitive industry and in a highly competitive market. Commercial real estate lending in the Puget Sound region attracts keen competition from large banking institutions with national operations, as well as mid-sized regional banking institutions. We compete with other community banks, savings and loan associations, credit unions, mortgage companies, insurance companies, finance companies and other financial intermediaries. The primary factors driving competition for deposits are customer service, interest rates, fees charged, branch locations and hours, online and mobile banking functionality, and the range of products offered. The primary factors driving competition for our lending products are customer service, range of products offered, price, reputation, and quality of execution. We believe the Bank is a strong competitor in our markets, however other competitors have certain advantages over us. Among them, many large institutions have the ability to finance extensive advertising campaigns, maintain extensive branch networks and make larger technology investments, and to offer services which we do not offer. The higher capitalization of the larger banking institutions permits them to have higher lending limits than those of the Bank. Some of our competitors have other advantages, such as tax exemption in the case of credit unions, and to some extent, lesser regulation in the case of mortgage companies and finance companies.

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Information Technology Systems

We have made and continue to make significant investments in our information technology systems and staff for our banking and lending operations and treasury management activities. We believe this investment will support our continued growth and enable us to enhance our capabilities to offer new products and overall customer experience, and to provide scale for future growth and acquisitions. We utilize a nationally recognized software vendor, and their support allows us to outsource our data processing. Our internal network and e-mail systems are outsourced to a third party and we have a back-up site in Phoenix, Arizona. This back-up site provides for redundancy and disaster recovery capabilities.

The majority of our other systems including our electronic funds transfer, transaction processing and our online banking services are hosted by third-party service providers. The scalability of this infrastructure will support our growth strategy. In addition, the tested capability of these vendors to automatically switch over to standby systems should allow us to recover our systems and provide business continuity quickly in case of a disaster.

Emerging Growth Company Status

We are an “emerging growth company” under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012, or the JOBS Act. An emerging growth company may take advantage of reduced reporting requirements and is relieved of certain other significant requirements that are otherwise generally applicable to public companies. As an emerging growth company:

 

we may present as few as two years of audited financial statements and as few as two years of related management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations;

 

we are exempt from the requirement to obtain an attestation report from our auditors on management’s assessment of the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, or the Sarbanes-Oxley Act;

 

we may choose not to comply with any new requirements adopted by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board requiring mandatory audit firm rotation or a supplement to the auditor’s report providing additional information about the audit and our financial statements;

 

we are permitted to provide reduced disclosure regarding our executive compensation arrangements pursuant to the rules applicable to smaller reporting companies, which means we do not have to include a compensation discussion and analysis and certain other disclosures regarding our executive compensation; and

 

we are not required to give our shareholders non-binding advisory votes on executive compensation or golden parachute arrangements.

We will cease to be an “emerging growth company” upon the earliest of:

 

the last day of the fiscal year in which we have total annual gross revenues of $1.07 billion or more;

 

the date on which we become a “large accelerated filer” (the fiscal year end on which the total market value of our common equity securities held by non-affiliates is $700 million or more as of June 30);

 

the date on which we have, during the previous three-year period, issued more than $1.0 billion in non-convertible debt; and

 

the last day of the fiscal year following the fifth anniversary of the completion of our initial public offering.

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We have elected to adopt certain of the reduced disclosure requirements above with respect to the periodic reports we will file with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, and proxy statements that we use to solicit proxies from our shareholders.

In addition, Section 107 of the JOBS Act permits us to take advantage of an extended transition period for complying with new or revised accounting standards affecting public companies. However, we have irrevocably opted out of the extended transition period and, as a result, we will adopt new or revised accounting standards on the relevant dates on which adoption of such standards is required for other public companies.

Our Employees

As of December 31, 2018, we had 183 full-time equivalent employees. None of our employees are parties to a collective bargaining agreement. We consider our relationship with our employees to be good and have not experienced interruptions of operations due to labor disagreements.

Regulation and Supervision

General

Insured banks, their holding companies and their affiliates are extensively regulated under federal and state law. As a result, our growth and earnings performance may be affected not only by management decisions and general economic conditions, but also by the requirements of federal and state statutes and by the regulations and policies of various bank regulatory agencies, including the Washington Department of Financial Institutions (Washington DFI), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Furthermore, tax laws administered by the Internal Revenue Service, or IRS, and state taxing authorities, accounting rules developed by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), securities laws administered by the SEC and state securities authorities, anti-money laundering laws enforced by the Treasury Department and mortgage related rules, including with respect to loan securitization and servicing by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and agencies such as Ginnie Mae and Freddie Mac, and SBA regulations with respect to small business loans, have an impact on our business. The effect of these statutes, regulations, regulatory policies and rules are significant to our operations and results, and the nature and extent of future legislative, regulatory or other changes affecting financial institutions are impossible to predict with any certainty.

Federal and state banking laws impose a comprehensive system of supervision, regulation and enforcement on the operations of insured banks, their holding companies and affiliates that is intended primarily for the protection of the FDIC-insured deposits and depositors of banks, rather than their shareholders. These federal and state laws, and the regulations of the bank regulatory agencies issued under them, affect, among other things, the scope of business, the kinds and amounts of investments banks may make, reserve requirements, capital levels relative to operations, the nature and amount of collateral for loans, the establishment of branches, the ability to merge, consolidate and acquire, dealings with insiders and affiliates and the payment of dividends.

This supervisory and regulatory framework subjects banks and bank holding companies to regular examination by their respective regulatory agencies, which results in examination reports and ratings that, while not publicly available, can impact the conduct and growth of their businesses. These examinations consider not only compliance with applicable laws and regulations, but also capital levels, asset quality and risk, management ability and performance, earnings, liquidity, sensitivity to market risk and various other factors. The regulatory agencies generally have broad discretion to impose restrictions and limitations on the operations of a regulated entity where the agencies determine, among other things, that such operations are unsafe or unsound, fail to comply with applicable law or are otherwise inconsistent with laws and regulations or with the supervisory policies of these agencies.

The following is a summary of the material elements of the supervisory and regulatory framework applicable to us and the Bank. It does not describe all of the statutes, regulations and regulatory policies that apply, nor does it restate all of the requirements of those that are described. The descriptions are qualified in their entirety by reference to the particular statutory and regulatory provision.

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Bank Holding Company Regulation

Since we own all of the capital stock of the Bank, we are a bank holding company under the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, as amended, or the BHC Act. As a result, we are primarily subject to the supervision, examination and reporting requirements of the BHC Act and the regulations of the Federal Reserve.

Acquisition of Banks

The BHC Act requires every bank holding company to obtain the Federal Reserve’s prior approval before:

 

acquiring direct or indirect ownership or control of any voting shares of any bank if, after the acquisition, the bank holding company will, directly or indirectly, own or control 5% or more of the bank’s voting shares;

 

acquiring all or substantially all of the assets of any bank; or

 

merging or consolidating with any other bank holding company.

Additionally, the BHC Act provides that the Federal Reserve may not approve any of the above transactions if such transaction would result in or tend to create a monopoly or substantially lessen competition or otherwise function as a restraint of trade, unless the anti-competitive effects of the proposed transaction are clearly outweighed by the public interest in meeting the convenience and needs of the community to be served. The Federal Reserve is also required to consider the financial and managerial resources and future prospects of the bank holding companies and banks concerned and the convenience and needs of the community to be served. The Federal Reserve’s consideration of financial resources includes a focus on capital adequacy, which is discussed in the section entitled “—Bank Regulation and Supervision—Capital Adequacy.” The Federal Reserve also considers the effectiveness of the institutions in combating money laundering, including a review of the anti-money laundering program of the acquiring bank holding company and the anti-money laundering compliance records of a bank to be acquired as part of the transaction. Finally, the Federal Reserve takes into consideration the extent to which the proposed transaction would result in greater or more concentrated risks to the stability of the U.S. banking or financial system.

Under the BHC Act, if well-capitalized and well-managed, we or any other bank holding company located in Washington may purchase a bank located outside of Washington without regard to whether such transaction is prohibited under state law. Conversely, a well-capitalized and well-managed bank holding company located outside of Washington may purchase a bank located inside Washington without regard to whether such transaction is prohibited under state law. In each case, however, restrictions may be placed under state law on the acquisition of a bank that has only been in existence for a limited amount of time or will result in concentrations of deposits exceeding limits specified by statute. For example, Washington law currently prohibits a bank holding company from acquiring control of a Washington-based financial institution until the target financial institution has been in operation for at least five years.

Change in Bank Control

Subject to various exceptions, the BHC Act and the Change in Bank Control Act, together with related regulations, require Federal Reserve approval prior to any person’s or company’s acquiring “control” of a bank holding company. Under a rebuttable presumption established by the Federal Reserve pursuant to the Change in Bank Control Act, the acquisition of 10% or more of a class of voting stock of a bank holding company would constitute acquisition of control of the bank holding company if no other person will own, control, or hold the power to vote a greater percentage of that class of voting stock immediately after the transaction or the bank holding company has registered securities under the Exchange Act. In addition, any person or group of persons acting in concert must obtain the approval of the Federal Reserve under the BHC Act before acquiring 25% (5% in the case of an acquirer that is already a bank holding company) or more of the outstanding voting stock of a bank holding company, the right to control in any manner the election of a majority of the company’s directors, or otherwise obtaining control or a “controlling influence” over the bank holding company.

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Permitted Activities

Under the BHC Act, a bank holding company is generally permitted to engage in or acquire direct or indirect control of the voting shares of any company engaged in the following activities:

 

banking or managing or controlling banks; and

 

any activity that the Federal Reserve determines to be so closely related to banking as to be a proper incident to the business of banking.

Activities that the Federal Reserve has found to be so closely related to banking as to be a proper incident to the business of banking include:

 

factoring accounts receivable;

 

making, acquiring, brokering or servicing loans and usual related activities in connection with the foregoing;

 

leasing personal or real property under certain conditions;

 

operating a non-bank depository institution, such as a savings association;

 

engaging in trust company functions in a manner authorized by state law;

 

financial and investment advisory activities;

 

discount securities brokerage activities;

 

underwriting and dealing in government obligations and money market instruments;

 

providing specified management consulting and counseling activities;

 

performing selected data processing services and support services;

 

acting as an agent or broker in selling credit life insurance and other types of insurance in connection with credit transactions; and

 

performing selected insurance underwriting activities.

The Federal Reserve may order a bank holding company or its subsidiaries to terminate any of these activities or to terminate its ownership or control of any subsidiary when it has reasonable cause to believe that the bank holding company’s continued ownership, activity or control constitutes a serious risk to the financial safety, soundness, or stability of it or any of its bank subsidiaries.

In addition to the permissible bank holding company activities listed above, a bank holding company may qualify and elect to become a financial holding company, thereby permitting the bank holding company to engage in activities that are financial in nature or incidental or complementary to financial activity. The BHC Act expressly lists the following activities as financial in nature:

 

lending, exchanging, transferring, investing for others, or safeguarding money or securities;

 

insuring, guaranteeing, or indemnifying against loss or harm, or providing and issuing annuities, and acting as principal, agent, or broker for these purposes, in any state;

 

providing financial, investment, or economic advisory services;

 

issuing or selling instruments representing interests in pools of assets permissible for a bank to hold directly;

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underwriting, dealing in or making a market in securities;

 

engaging in other activities that the Federal Reserve may determine to be so closely related to banking or managing or controlling banks as to be a proper incident to managing or controlling banks;

 

engaging in the United States in activities permitted outside of the United States if the Federal Reserve has determined them to be usual in connection with banking or other financial operations abroad;

 

merchant banking through securities or insurance affiliates; and

 

insurance company portfolio investments.

For us to qualify to become a financial holding company, we must be well-capitalized and well-managed. In addition, the Bank and any other depository institution subsidiary we control must be well-capitalized and well-managed and must have a CRA rating of at least “satisfactory.” Additionally, we must file an election with the Federal Reserve to become a financial holding company and must provide the Federal Reserve with 30 days written notice prior to engaging in a permitted financial activity. We have not elected to become a financial holding company at this time.

Support of Subsidiary Institutions

The Federal Deposit Insurance Act and a Federal Reserve regulation require a bank holding company to serve as a source of financial and managerial strength to its bank subsidiaries. In addition, where a bank holding company has more than one FDIC-insured bank or thrift subsidiary, each of the bank holding company’s subsidiary FDIC-insured depository institutions is responsible for any losses to the FDIC as a result of an affiliated depository institution’s failure. As a result of a bank holding company’s source of strength obligation, a bank holding company may be required to provide funds to a bank subsidiary in the form of subordinate capital or other instruments which qualify as capital under bank regulatory rules.

Repurchase or Redemption of Securities

A bank holding company that is not well capitalized or well managed, or that is subject to any unresolved supervisory issues, is required to give the Federal Reserve prior written notice of any purchase or redemption of its own then outstanding equity securities if the gross consideration for the purchase or redemption, when combined with the net consideration paid for all such purchases or redemptions during the preceding 12 months, is equal to 10% or more of the company’s consolidated net worth. The Federal Reserve may disapprove such a purchase or redemption if it determines that the proposal would constitute an unsafe and unsound practice, or would violate any law, regulation, Federal Reserve order or directive, or any condition imposed by, or written agreement with, the Federal Reserve.

Bank Regulation and Supervision

The Bank is subject to extensive federal and state banking laws and regulations that impose restrictions on and provide for general regulatory oversight of the operations of the Bank. These laws and regulations are generally intended to protect the safety and soundness of the Bank and the Bank’s depositors, rather than our shareholders. The following discussion describes the material elements of the regulatory framework that applies to the Bank.

Since the Bank is a commercial bank chartered under the laws of the state of Washington and is a member of the Federal Reserve System, it is primarily subject to the supervision, examination and reporting requirements of the Federal Reserve and the Washington DFI. The Federal Reserve and the Washington DFI regularly examine the Bank’s operations and have the authority to approve or disapprove mergers, the establishment of branches and similar corporate actions. Both regulatory agencies have the power to take enforcement action to prevent the development or continuance of unsafe or unsound banking practices or other violations of law. The Bank’s deposits are insured by the FDIC to the maximum extent provided by law. The Bank is also subject to numerous federal and state statutes and regulations that affect its business, activities and operations.

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Branching

Under current Washington law, the Bank may open branch offices throughout Washington with the prior approval of the Washington DFI. In addition, with prior regulatory approval, the Bank may acquire branches of existing banks located in Washington. Under federal law, the Bank may establish branch offices with the prior approval of the Federal Reserve. Federal law allows a bank to branch into a new state by setting up a new branch if, under the laws of the state in which the branch is to be located, a state bank chartered by that state would be permitted to establish the branch.

FDIC Insurance and Other Assessments

The Bank’s deposits are insured by the FDIC to the full extent provided in the Federal Deposit Insurance Act (currently $250,000 per deposit account), and the Bank pays assessments to the FDIC for that coverage. Under the FDIC’s risk-based deposit insurance assessment system, an insured institution’s deposit insurance premium is computed by multiplying the institution’s assessment base by the institution’s assessment rate. An institution’s assessment base equals the institution’s average consolidated total assets during a particular assessment period, minus the institution’s average tangible equity capital (that is, Tier 1 capital) during such period. For banks with less than $10.0 billion in total consolidated assets, the assessment rate is calculated using a financial ratios method based on a statistical model estimating the bank’s probability of failure over three years utilizing seven financial ratios (leverage ratio; net income before taxes/total assets; nonperforming loans and leases/gross assets; other real estate owned/gross assets; brokered deposit ratio; one year asset growth; and loan mix index) and a weighted average of supervisory ratings components. The current rule fixes the range of assessment rates from 1.5 basis points for an institution posing the least risk, to 30 basis points for an institution posing the most risk; and will further lower the range of assessment rates if the reserve ratio of the Deposit Insurance Fund increases to 2% or more. Banks with over $10.0 billion in total consolidated assets are required to pay a surcharge of 4.5 basis points on their assessment basis, subject to certain adjustments. The FDIC may also impose special assessments from time to time.

In addition to its risk-based insurance assessments, the FDIC also imposes Financing Corporation, or FICO, assessments to help pay the $780 million in annual interest payments on the approximately $8 billion of bonds issued in the late 1980s as part of the government rescue of the savings and loan industry. For the fourth quarter of 2018, the bank’s FICO assessment was equal to 0.035%, or 0.14% annually, per $100 of assessment base. FICO assessments will continue until all outstanding bonds mature in 2019.

Termination of Deposit Insurance

The FDIC may terminate its insurance of deposits of a bank if it finds that the bank has engaged in unsafe or unsound practices, is in an unsafe or unsound condition to continue operations, or has violated any applicable law, regulation, rule, order or condition imposed by the FDIC.

Community Reinvestment Act

The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) requires that, in connection with examinations of insured depository institutions within their respective jurisdictions, the federal banking agencies will evaluate the record of each financial institution in meeting the credit needs of its local community, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. The Federal Reserve’s evaluation of the Bank’s record of performance under the CRA is publicly available. A bank’s CRA performance is also considered in evaluating applications seeking approval for mergers, acquisitions, and new offices or facilities. Failure to adequately meet these criteria could result in additional requirements and limitations being imposed on the bank. Additionally, we must publicly disclose the terms of certain CRA-related agreements. The Bank received a Satisfactory rating at its most recent evaluation dated September 25, 2017.

Interest Rate Limitations

Interest and other charges collected or contracted for by the Bank are subject to applicable state usury laws and federal laws concerning interest rates.

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Federal Laws Applicable to Consumer Credit and Deposit Transactions

The Bank’s loan and deposit operations are subject to a number of federal consumer protection laws, including:

 

the Federal Truth in Lending Act, governing disclosures of credit terms to consumer borrowers;

 

the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, imposing requirements on the settlement and servicing of residential mortgage loans;

 

the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, requiring financial institutions to provide information to enable the public and public officials to determine whether a financial institution is fulfilling its obligation to help meet the housing needs of the communities it serves;

 

the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status or certain other prohibited factors in all aspects of credit transactions;

 

the Fair Credit Reporting Act, or FCRA, governing the use and provision of information to credit reporting agencies;

 

the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, governing the manner in which consumer debts may be collected by debt collectors;

 

the Service Members Civil Relief Act, governing the repayment terms of, and property rights underlying, secured obligations of persons in military service;

 

the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, governing the disclosure and safeguarding of sensitive non-public personal information of our clients;

 

the Right to Financial Privacy Act, imposing a duty to maintain confidentiality of consumer financial records and prescribes procedures for complying with administrative subpoenas of financial records;

 

the Electronic Funds Transfer Act governing automatic deposits to and withdrawals from deposit accounts and clients’ rights and liabilities arising from the use of automated teller machines and other electronic banking services; and

 

the rules and regulations of the CFPB and various federal agencies charged with the responsibility of implementing these federal laws.

Capital Adequacy

The Federal Reserve has adopted risk-based and leverage capital adequacy requirements, pursuant to which they assess the adequacy of capital in examining and supervising banks and in analyzing bank regulatory applications. Risk-based capital requirements determine the adequacy of capital based on the risk inherent in various classes of assets and off-balance sheet items. The federal banking regulators have adopted regulations implementing the Basel Capital Adequacy Accord, or Basel III, which had been approved by the Basel member central bank governors in 2010 as an agreement among the countries’ central banks and bank regulators on the amount of capital banks and their holding companies must maintain as a cushion against losses and insolvency. The U.S. Basel III rule’s minimum capital to risk-weighted assets requirements are a common equity Tier 1 capital ratio of 4.5%, a Tier 1 capital ratio of 6.0%, and a total capital ratio of 8.0%. The minimum leverage ratio (Tier 1 capital to total assets) is 4.0%. Bank holding companies with assets of less than $3.0 billion that are not engaged in significant nonbanking activities, do not conduct significant off-balance sheet activities and that do not have a material amount of debt or equity securities registered with the SEC, such as the Company, are exempt from the Federal Reserve’s risk-based-capital and leverage rules.

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In order to avoid limitations on capital distributions, including dividend payments and certain discretionary bonus payments to executive officers, a banking organization must maintain a capital conservation buffer composed of common equity Tier 1 capital above its minimum risk-based capital requirements. The buffer is measured relative to risk-weighted assets. Phase-in of the capital conservation buffer requirements began on January 1, 2016, and the requirements were fully phased in on January 1, 2019. The capital conservation buffer requirement for 2018 was 1.875%. A banking organization with a buffer greater than 2.5% once the capital conservation buffer is fully phased in would not be subject to limits on capital distributions or discretionary bonus payments; however, a banking organization with a buffer of less than 2.5% would be subject to increasingly stringent limitations as the buffer approaches zero. A banking organization also would be prohibited from making distributions or discretionary bonus payments during any quarter if its eligible retained income is negative in that quarter and its capital conservation buffer ratio was less than 2.5% at the beginning of the quarter. Effectively, the Basel III framework will require the Bank to meet minimum risk-based capital ratios of (i) 7% for common equity Tier 1 capital, (ii) 8.5% Tier 1 capital, and (iii) 10.5% total capital, once it is fully phased in. The eligible retained income of a banking organization is defined as its net income for the four calendar quarters preceding the current calendar quarter, based on the organization’s quarterly regulatory reports, net of any distributions and associated tax effects not already reflected in net income. When the rule is fully phased in, the minimum capital requirements plus the capital conservation buffer will exceed the prompt corrective action, or PCA, well-capitalized thresholds, which are described below under “—Prompt Corrective Action.”

The U.S. Basel III rule includes stringent criteria for capital instruments to qualify as Tier 1 or Tier 2 capital. For instance, the rule effectively disallows newly-issued trust preferred securities as a component of a holding company’s Tier 1 capital. However, depository institution holding companies with less than $15 billion in total assets may permanently include non-qualifying instruments that were issued and included in Tier 1 or Tier 2 capital prior to May 19, 2010 in Additional Tier 1 or Tier 2 capital until they redeem such instruments or until the instruments mature. At December 31, 2018, the Company had $3.5 million of non-qualifying instruments includable in Tier 1 capital that were issued prior to May 19, 2010.

In December 2017, the Basel Committee published standards that it described as the finalization of the Basel III post-crisis regulatory reforms, which standards are commonly referred to as Basel IV. Among other things, these standards revise the Basel Committee’s standardized approach for credit risk (including the recalibration of the risk weights and the introduction of new capital requirements for certain “unconditionally cancellable commitments,” such as unused credit card lines of credit) and provides a new standardized approach for operational risk capital. Under the Basel framework, these standards will generally be effective on January 1, 2022, with an aggregate output floor phasing in through January 1, 2027. Under the current U.S. capital rules, operational risk capital requirements and a capital floor apply only to advanced approaches institutions, and are not applicable to the Bank. The impact of Basel IV on us will depend on how it is implemented by the federal bank regulators.

 

The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (the “EGRRCPA”) requires the federal banking agencies to develop a community bank leverage ratio (defined as the ratio of tangible equity capital to average total consolidated assets) for banks and holding companies with total consolidated assets of less than $10 billion and an appropriate risk profile. The required regulations must specify a minimum community bank leverage ratio of not less than 8% and not more than 10%, as well as procedures for treatment of a qualifying community bank that has a community bank leverage ratio that falls below the required minimum. Qualifying banks that exceed the minimum community bank leverage ratio will be deemed to be in compliance with all other capital and leverage requirements.   The federal banking agencies have proposed regulations that would establish a community bank leverage ratio of 9.0%

Failure to meet statutorily mandated capital guidelines or more restrictive ratios separately established for a banking institution could subject the institution to a variety of enforcement remedies available to federal regulatory authorities, including issuance of a capital directive, the termination of deposit insurance by the FDIC, a prohibition on accepting or renewing brokered deposits, limitations on the rates of interest that the institution may pay on its deposits, and other restrictions on its business.

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Prompt Corrective Action

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991 establishes a system of “prompt corrective action” to resolve the problems of undercapitalized insured depository institutions. Under this system, the federal banking regulators have established five capital categories (well-capitalized, adequately capitalized, undercapitalized, significantly undercapitalized and critically undercapitalized) into which all insured depository institutions are placed. The federal banking agencies have specified by regulation the relevant capital thresholds and other qualitative requirements for each of those categories. For an insured depository institution to be “well-capitalized” under the PCA framework, it must have a common equity Tier 1 capital ratio of 6.5%, Tier 1 capital ratio of 8.0%, a total capital ratio of 10.0%, and a leverage ratio of 5.0%, and must not be subject to any written agreement, order or capital directive, or prompt corrective action directive issued by its primary federal regulator to meet and maintain a specific capital level for any capital measure. At December 31, 2018, the Bank qualified for the well-capitalized category.

Federal banking regulators are required to take various mandatory supervisory actions and are authorized to take other discretionary actions with respect to institutions in the three undercapitalized categories. An undercapitalized institution has a capital ratio below any one of four thresholds: a common equity Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of 4.5%, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of 6.0%, a total risk-based capital ratio of 8.0%, or a leverage ratio of 4.0%. The severity of the action depends upon the capital category in which the institution is placed. For example, institutions in all three undercapitalized categories are automatically restricted from paying distributions and management fees, whereas only an institution that is significantly undercapitalized or critically undercapitalized is restricted in its compensation paid to senior executive officers. Generally, subject to a narrow exception, the banking regulator must appoint a receiver or conservator for an institution that is critically undercapitalized.

An institution that is categorized as undercapitalized, significantly undercapitalized, or critically undercapitalized is required to submit an acceptable capital restoration plan to its appropriate federal banking agency. Such a plan must include a guarantee from the institution’s bank holding company that the institution will comply with the plan until the institution has been adequately capitalized on average during each of the four consecutive calendar quarters. The holding company’s obligation to fund a capital restoration plan is limited to the lesser of (i) 5% of an undercapitalized subsidiary institution’s assets at the time it became undercapitalized and (ii) the amount required to meet regulatory capital requirements. An undercapitalized institution is also generally prohibited from increasing its average total assets, making acquisitions, establishing any branches or engaging in any new line of business, except under an accepted capital restoration plan or with Federal Reserve approval.

The regulations also establish procedures for downgrading an institution to a lower capital category based on supervisory factors other than capital.

Liquidity

Financial institutions are subject to significant regulatory scrutiny regarding their liquidity positions. This scrutiny has increased during recent years, as the economic downturn that began in the late 2000s negatively affected the liquidity of many financial institutions. Various bank regulatory publications, including Federal Reserve SR 10-6 (Funding and Liquidity Risk Management), address the identification, measurement, monitoring and control of funding and liquidity risk by financial institutions.

The U.S. federal banking regulators have introduced two new liquidity metrics for large banking organizations. The first metric is the “liquidity coverage ratio,” and it aims to require a financial institution to maintain sufficient high-quality liquid resources to survive an acute stress scenario that lasts for one month. The second metric is the “net stable funding ratio,” and its objective is to require a financial institution to maintain a minimum amount of stable sources relative to the liquidity profiles of the institution’s assets, as well as the potential for contingent liquidity needs arising from off-balance sheet commitments, over a one-year horizon.

The federal banking regulators finalized the liquidity coverage ratio in September 2014, and proposed the net stable funding ratio in May 2016. While the liquidity coverage ratio and the proposed net stable funding ratio only apply to the largest banking organizations in the country, certain elements may filter down and become applicable to or expected of all insured depository institutions.

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Payment of Dividends

We are a legal entity separate and distinct from the Bank. Our principal source of cash flow, including cash flow to pay dividends to our shareholders, is dividends the Bank pays to us as the Bank’s sole shareholder. Statutory and regulatory limitations apply to the Bank’s payment of dividends to us as well as to our payment of dividends to our shareholders. A corollary to the requirement that a bank holding company serve as a source of strength to its subsidiary banks is the Federal Reserve policy that a bank holding company should not maintain a level of cash dividends to its shareholders that places undue pressure on the capital of its bank subsidiaries or that can be funded only through additional borrowings or other arrangements that may undermine the bank holding company’s ability to serve as such a source of strength. Our ability to pay dividends is also subject to the provisions of Washington corporate law that prevent distributions to shareholders if, after giving effect to the distribution, we would not be able to pay our liabilities as they become due in the usual course of business or our total assets would be less than the sum of our total liabilities plus the amount that would be needed, if we were to be dissolved at the time of the distribution, to satisfy the preferential rights upon dissolution of shareholders whose preferential rights are superior to those receiving the distribution. In addition, in deciding whether or not to declare a dividend of any particular size, our board of directors must consider our and the Bank’s current and prospective capital, liquidity, and other needs.

The Washington DFI and the Federal Reserve also regulate the Bank’s dividend payments. Under Washington law, a state-chartered bank may not pay a dividend in an amount greater than its retained earnings without approval. Under Federal Reserve regulations, the Bank may not declare or pay a dividend if the total of all dividends declared during the calendar year, including the proposed dividend, exceeds the sum of the Bank’s net income during the current calendar year and the retained net income of the prior two calendar years, unless the dividend has been approved by the Federal Reserve.

The Bank’s payment of dividends may also be affected or limited by other factors, such as the requirement to maintain adequate capital above regulatory guidelines. The federal banking agencies have indicated that paying dividends that deplete a depository institution’s capital base to an inadequate level would be an unsafe and unsound banking practice. Under the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991, a depository institution may not pay any dividends if payment would cause it to become undercapitalized or if it already is undercapitalized. Moreover, the federal agencies have issued policy statements providing that bank holding companies and insured banks should generally only pay dividends out of current operating earnings.

Restrictions on Transactions with Affiliates and Insiders

The Bank is subject to Section 23A of the Federal Reserve Act, which places limits on the amount of:

 

a bank’s loans or extensions of credit to affiliates;

 

a bank’s investment in securities issued by affiliates;

 

assets a bank may purchase from affiliates;

 

loans or extensions of credit made by a bank to third parties collateralized by the securities or obligations of affiliates;

 

a bank’s guarantee, acceptance or letter of credit issued on behalf of an affiliate;

 

a bank’s transactions with an affiliate involving the borrowing or lending of securities to the extent they create credit exposure to the affiliate; and

 

a bank’s derivative transactions with an affiliate to the extent they create credit exposure to the affiliate.

Subject to various exceptions, the total amount of the above transactions is limited in amount, as to any one affiliate, to 10% of a bank’s capital and surplus and, as to all affiliates combined, to 20% of a bank’s capital and surplus. In addition to the limitation on the amount of these transactions, the above transactions also must meet specified collateral requirements and safety and soundness requirements. Under no circumstances may a bank purchase a low-quality asset from an affiliate.

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The Bank is also subject to Section 23B of the Federal Reserve Act, which, among other things, prohibits a bank from engaging in the above transactions with affiliates, as well as other types of transactions set forth in Section 23B, unless the transactions are on terms substantially the same, or at least as favorable to the bank, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions with nonaffiliated companies.

The Bank is also subject to restrictions on extensions of credit to its executive officers, directors, principal shareholders and their related interests. These extensions of credit (i) must be made on substantially the same terms, including interest rates and collateral, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions between the bank and third parties, and (ii) must not involve more than the normal risk of repayment or present other unfavorable features. There are also individual and aggregate limitations on loans to insiders and their related interests. The aggregate amount of insider loans generally cannot exceed the institution’s total unimpaired capital and surplus. Insiders and banks are subject to enforcement actions for knowingly entering into insider loans in violation of applicable restrictions.

Single Borrower Credit Limits

Under federal law, total loans and extensions of credit to a borrower may not exceed 15% of the Bank’s unimpaired capital and surplus. However, such loans may be in excess of that percentage, but not above 25%, if each loan in excess of 15% is fully collateralized by readily marketable collateral. Under Washington law, total loans and extensions of credit to a borrower may not exceed 20% of the Bank’s capital and surplus.

Commercial Real Estate Concentration Limits

In December 2006, the federal banking regulators issued guidance entitled “Concentrations in Commercial Real Estate Lending, Sound Risk Management Practices” to address increased concentrations in commercial real estate, or CRE, loans. In addition, in December 2015, the federal bank agencies issued additional guidance entitled “Statement on Prudent Risk Management for Commercial Real Estate Lending.” Together, these guidelines describe the criteria the agencies will use as indicators to identify institutions potentially exposed to CRE concentration risk. An institution that has (i) experienced rapid growth in CRE lending, (ii) notable exposure to a specific type of CRE, (iii) total reported loans for construction, land development, and other land representing 100% or more of the institution’s capital, or (iv) total CRE loans representing 300% or more of the institution’s capital, and the outstanding balance of the institutions CRE portfolio has increased by 50% or more in the prior 36 months, may be identified for further supervisory analysis of the level and nature of its CRE concentration risk. As of December 31, 2018, the Bank’s total non-owner-occupied commercial real estate loans, including loans secured by apartment buildings, investor commercial real estate, and construction and land loans, represented 333.0% of its capital, thus exceeding the 300% target. However, the ratio has decreased since December 31, 2017 when it was at 354.7%.  

Privacy

Financial institutions are required to disclose their policies for collecting and protecting non-public personal information of their clients. Clients generally may prevent financial institutions from sharing non-public personal information with nonaffiliated third parties except under certain circumstances, such as the processing of transactions requested by the consumer or when the financial institution is jointly offering a product or service with a nonaffiliated financial institution. Additionally, financial institutions generally are prohibited from disclosing consumer account numbers to any nonaffiliated third party for use in telemarketing, direct mail marketing or other marketing to consumers.

Cybersecurity

Federal banking agencies pay close attention to the cybersecurity practices of banks and their holding companies and affiliates. The interagency council of the agencies, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, or FFIEC, has issued several policy statements and other guidance for banks as new cybersecurity threats arise. FFIEC has recently focused on such matters as compromised customer credentials and business continuity planning. Examinations by the banking agencies now include review of an institution’s information technology and its ability to thwart cyberattacks.

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Consumer Credit Reporting

The FCRA imposes, among other things:

 

requirements for financial institutions to develop policies and procedures to identify potential identity theft and, upon the request of a consumer, to place a fraud alert in the consumer’s credit file stating that the consumer may be the victim of identity theft or other fraud;

 

requirements for entities that furnish information to consumer reporting agencies to implement procedures and policies regarding the accuracy and integrity of the furnished information and regarding the correction of previously furnished information that is later determined to be inaccurate;

 

requirements for mortgage lenders to disclose credit scores to consumers in certain circumstances; and

 

limitations on the ability of a business that receives consumer information from an affiliate to use that information for marketing purposes.

Anti-Terrorism, Money Laundering Legislation and OFAC

The Bank is subject to the Bank Secrecy Act and the USA Patriot Act. These statutes and related rules and regulations impose requirements and limitations on specified financial transactions and accounts and other relationships intended to guard against money laundering and terrorism financing. The principal requirements for an insured depository institution include (i) establishment of an anti-money laundering program that includes training and audit components, (ii) establishment of a “know your customer” program involving due diligence to confirm the identities of persons seeking to open accounts and to deny accounts to those persons unable to demonstrate their identities, (iii) the filing of currency transaction reports for deposits and withdrawals of large amounts of cash, (iv) additional precautions for accounts sought and managed for non-U.S. persons and (v) verification and certification of money laundering risk with respect to private banking and foreign correspondent banking relationships. For many of these tasks a bank must keep records to be made available to its primary federal regulator. Anti-money laundering rules and policies are developed by a bureau within the Treasury Department, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, but compliance by individual institutions is overseen by its primary federal regulator.

The Bank has established appropriate anti-money laundering and customer identification programs. The Bank also maintains records of cash purchases of negotiable instruments, files reports of certain cash transactions exceeding $10,000 (daily aggregate amount), and reports suspicious activity that might signify money laundering, tax evasion, or other criminal activities pursuant to the Bank Secrecy Act. The Bank otherwise has implemented policies and procedures to comply with the foregoing requirements.

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, or OFAC, is responsible for helping to ensure that U.S. entities do not engage in transactions with certain prohibited parties, as defined by various Executive Orders and Acts of Congress. OFAC publishes lists of persons, organizations and countries suspected of aiding, harboring or engaging in terrorist acts, known as Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons. If the Company or the Bank finds a name on any transaction, account or wire transfer that is on an OFAC list, the Company or the Bank must freeze or block such account or transaction, file a suspicious activity report, and notify the appropriate authorities.

Sarbanes-Oxley Act

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act represents a comprehensive revision of laws affecting corporate governance, accounting obligations and corporate reporting. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act is applicable to all companies with equity securities registered, or that file reports, under the Exchange Act. In particular, the act established (i) requirements for audit committees, including independence, expertise and responsibilities; (ii) responsibilities regarding financial statements for the chief executive officer and chief financial officer of the reporting company and new requirements for them to certify the accuracy of periodic reports; (iii) standards for auditors and regulation of audits; (iv) disclosure and reporting obligations for the reporting company and its directors and executive officers; and (v) civil and criminal penalties for violations of the federal securities laws. The legislation also established a new accounting oversight board to enforce auditing standards and restrict the scope of services that accounting firms may provide to their public company audit clients.

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Overdraft Fees

Federal Reserve Regulation E restricts banks’ abilities to charge overdraft fees. The rule prohibits financial institutions from charging fees for paying overdrafts on ATM and one-time debit card transactions, unless a consumer consents, or opts in, to the overdraft service for those types of transactions.

The Dodd-Frank Act and the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (EGRRCPA)

As final rules and regulations implementing the Dodd-Frank Act have been adopted, this law has significantly changed and is significantly changing the bank regulatory framework and affected the lending, deposit, investment, trading and operating activities of banks and their holding companies.

A number of the effects of the Dodd-Frank Act are described or otherwise accounted for in various parts of this “—Supervision and Regulation” section. The following items provide a brief description of certain other provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act that may be relevant to us and the Bank.

 

The Dodd-Frank Act imposed new requirements regarding the origination and servicing of residential mortgage loans. The law created a variety of new consumer protections, including limitations, subject to exceptions, on the manner by which loan originators may be compensated and an obligation on the part of lenders to verify a borrower’s “ability to repay” a residential mortgage loan. Final rules implementing these latter statutory requirements became effective in 2014.

 

The Dodd-Frank Act eliminated the federal prohibitions on paying interest on demand deposits effective one year after the date of its enactment, thus allowing businesses to have interest-bearing checking accounts. Depending on competitive responses, this significant change to existing law could have an adverse impact on our interest expense.

 

The Dodd-Frank Act addresses many investor protection, corporate governance and executive compensation matters that will affect most U.S. publicly traded companies. The Dodd-Frank Act (i) requires publicly traded companies to give shareholders a non-binding vote on executive compensation and golden parachute payments; (ii) enhances independence requirements for compensation committee members; (iii) requires national securities exchanges to require listed companies to adopt incentive-based compensation clawback policies for executive officers; (iv) authorizes the SEC to promulgate rules that would allow shareholders to nominate their own candidates using a company’s proxy materials; and (v) directs the federal banking regulators to issue rules prohibiting incentive compensation that encourages inappropriate risks.

The EGRRCPA made changes to a variety of rules and regulations, including revisions to the Dodd-Frank Act. For example, the EGRRCPA exempts certain lenders from the “ability to repay” requirements. Other EGRRCPA changes are described elsewhere in this section.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The Dodd-Frank Act created the CFPB, an independent federal bureau within the Federal Reserve System having broad rulemaking, supervisory and enforcement powers under various federal consumer financial protection laws, including the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Truth in Lending Act, Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the consumer financial privacy provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and certain other statutes. The CFPB has examination and primary enforcement authority with respect to depository institutions with more than $10.0 billion in assets. Smaller institutions, including the Bank, are subject to rules promulgated by the CFPB but continue to be examined and supervised by federal banking agencies for compliance with federal consumer protection laws and regulations. The CFPB also has authority to prevent unfair, deceptive or abusive practices in connection with the offering of consumer financial products. The Dodd-Frank Act permits states to adopt consumer protection laws and standards that are more stringent than those adopted at the federal level and, in certain circumstances, permits state attorneys general to enforce compliance with both the state and federal laws and regulations. The EGRRCPA requires amendments generally intended to narrow the scope of certain of these rules, but we are not currently able to determine how these changes may affect the Bank’s business.

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The CFPB has proposed or issued a number of important rules affecting a wide range of consumer financial products. The changes resulting from the Dodd-Frank Act and CFPB rulemakings and enforcement policies may impact the profitability of our business activities, limit our ability to make, or the desirability of making, certain types of loans, require us to change our business practices, impose upon us more stringent capital, liquidity and leverage ratio requirements or otherwise adversely affect our business or profitability. The changes may also require us to dedicate significant management attention and resources to evaluate and make necessary changes to comply with the new statutory and regulatory requirements.

The CFPB has concentrated much of its rulemaking efforts on reforms related to residential mortgage transactions. The CFPB has issued rules related to a borrower’s ability to repay and qualified mortgage standards, mortgage servicing standards, loan originator compensation standards, requirements for high cost mortgages, appraisal and escrow standards and requirements for higher-priced mortgages. The CFPB has also issued rules establishing integrated disclosure requirements for lenders and settlement agents in connection with most closed end, real estate secured consumer loans; and rules which, among other things, expand the scope of information lenders must report in connection with mortgage and other housing-related loan applications under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. These rules, which become effective on a rolling basis through January 1, 2019, include significant regulatory and compliance changes and are expected to have a broad impact on the financial services industry.

With the recent change in leadership at the CFPB, the agency has released a new strategic plan and published formal requests for information on possible changes to its supervisory, enforcement and other programs. These developments suggest that the CFPB may be taking a different approach to its implementation of consumer financial protection laws, but the agency has not proposed specific changes to its regulations. The EGRRCPA requires the CFPB to make changes to various regulations.

The Volcker Rule

On December 10, 2013, five U.S. financial regulators, including the Federal Reserve, adopted a final rule implementing the “Volcker Rule.” The Volcker Rule was created by Section 619 of the Dodd-Frank Act and prohibits “banking entities” from engaging in “proprietary trading.” Banking entities also are prohibited from sponsoring or investing in private equity or hedge funds, or extending credit to or engaging in other covered transactions with affiliated private equity or hedge funds. The fundamental prohibitions of the Volcker Rule generally apply to banking entities of any size, including us, the bank and any other “affiliate” under the BHC Act. The EGRRCPA amends Section 619 to exempt from the Volcker Rule any insured depository institution that has $10.0 billion or less in total consolidated assets and whose total trading assets and trading liabilities are 5% or less of total consolidated assets.

Limitations on Incentive Compensation

In April 2016, the Federal Reserve and other federal financial agencies re-proposed restrictions on incentive-based compensation pursuant to Section 956 of the Dodd-Frank Act for financial institutions with $1 billion or more in total consolidated assets. For institutions with at least $1 billion but less than $50 billion in total consolidated assets, the proposal would impose principles-based restrictions that are broadly consistent with existing interagency guidance on incentive-based compensation. Such institutions would be prohibited from entering into incentive compensation arrangements that encourage inappropriate risks by the institution (1) by providing an executive officer, employee, director, or principal shareholder with excessive compensation, fees, or benefits, or (2) that could lead to material financial loss to the institution. The proposal would also impose certain governance and recordkeeping requirements on institutions covered by the rule. Whether or when the agencies will finalize the proposal is uncertain.

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Executive Officers

The table below provides information about our executive officers. Ages are as of December 31, 2018.

 

Name

 

Age

 

Position

 

 

 

 

 

Eric M. Sprink

 

46

 

President, Chief Executive Officer and Director

Joel G. Edwards

 

58

 

Chief Financial Officer, Corporate Secretary

Russ A. Keithley

 

53

 

Chief Lending Officer

John J. Dickson

Daniel J. Lee

 

58

62

 

Chief Operations Officer

Chief Credit and Risk Officer

 

 

The following is a brief discussion of the business and banking background and experience of our executive officers, including their business experience during the last five years.

Eric M. Sprink serves as our President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Sprink joined the Company in late 2006 as President and Chief Operating Officer and became Chief Executive Officer in 2010. Mr. Sprink began his banking career working for Security Pacific Bank while enrolled at Arizona State University. He assumed increasing levels of responsibility in the areas of retail operations, consumer and commercial lending and wealth management with Security Pacific Bank and its successor, Bank of America. He then moved to Centura Bank, where he held management positions in retail operations and corporate finance. After Centura Bank was acquired, he held senior management positions at Washington Trust Bank and Global Credit Union. Mr. Sprink is active in industry trade groups and is a director and past chairman of the Community Bankers of Washington. Mr. Sprink received a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University and an M.B.A. from the University of North Carolina. Mr. Sprink brings to our board of directors leadership experience, significant experience in many facets of the financial services business, and familiarity with our market area. Mr. Sprink has been a member of our board of directors since 2006.

Joel G. Edwards has served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the Company since 2012. Mr. Edwards is also the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the Bank. Prior to joining the Company and Bank, Mr. Edwards was a Senior Vice President and Administration Officer at AmericanWest Bank. Prior to that experience, he was Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Viking Bank, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Rainier Pacific Bank, and President of the Washington Credit Union Share Guaranty Association. He also was employed in the Farm Credit System for eight years including positions as vice president responsible for administration, budget and policy. Mr. Edwards graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in business and concentration in economics from, and completed post-graduate studies in accounting at, Eastern Washington University. He also received an M.B.A. from Eastern Washington University.

Russ A. Keithley serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of the Bank, positions he has held since 2015. Mr. Keithley joined the Bank in 2012 and became Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer in 2014. Prior to joining the Bank, he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of North County Bank and Manager Team Lead at InterWest Bank. Mr. Keithley graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor’s degree in political science. He is an honors graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington.

John J. Dickson joined the Bank in 2010 and currently serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer of the Bank. Prior to joining the Bank, he served in various roles for Frontier Financial Corporation and Frontier Bank from 1985 to 2010, most recently serving as President of Frontier Bank from 2008 to 2010. In 2010, Frontier Bank was closed by the Washington DFI, and the FDIC was named receiver. Mr. Dickson received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Puget Sound and graduated with honors from the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Mr. Dickson practiced accounting as a CPA for three years in the audit division of a large accounting firm. Mr. Dickson is past Chairman of the Washington Bankers Association.

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Daniel J. Lee joined the Bank in 2018 and currently serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Credit and Risk Officer.  Prior to joining the Bank, he most recently served as Executive Vice President, Chief Credit Officer for Bank of the Cascades where he managed all credit administration and loan operations.  After helping Bank of the Cascades to more than double its assets and loans in just five years, Bank of the Cascades was acquired by First Interstate Bank in 2017.  Prior to that, Mr. Lee served in senior leadership roles of both public and privately held banks.  Mr. Lee earned his BS and MBA from the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University.  He attended the ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking—currently domiciled at the Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania. He served as a Director on the Government Relations Council of the American Bankers Association and has a rich history of helping advocate for community resources that benefit new businesses and charitable services.

 

 

Item 1A.

Risk Factors

Investing in the Company’s common stock involves risks. The investor should carefully consider the following risk factors before deciding to make an investment decision regarding the Company’s stock. The risk factors may cause future earnings to be lower or the financial condition to be less favorable than expected. In addition, other risks that the Company is not aware of, or which are not believed to be material, may cause earnings to be lower, or may deteriorate the financial condition of the Company. Consideration should also be given to the other information in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, as well as in the documents incorporated by reference into this Form 10-K.

Risks Related to Our Business

Our commercial real estate lending activities expose us to increased lending risks and related loan losses.

At December 31, 2018, our commercial real estate loan portfolio totaled $516.0 million, or 67.1% of our total loan portfolio. Our current business strategy is to continue our originations of commercial real estate loans. Commercial real estate loans generally expose a lender to greater risk of non-payment and loss than one-to-four family residential mortgage loans because repayment of the loans often depends on the successful operation of the properties and the income stream of the borrowers. These loans involve larger loan balances to single borrowers or groups of related borrowers compared to one-to-four family residential mortgage loans. To the extent that borrowers have more than one commercial real estate loan outstanding, an adverse development with respect to one loan or one credit relationship could expose us to a significantly greater risk of loss compared to an adverse development with respect to a one-to-four family residential real estate loan. Moreover, if loans that are collateralized by commercial real estate become troubled and the value of the real estate has been significantly impaired, then we may not be able to recover the full contractual amount of principal and interest that we anticipated at the time we originated the loan, which could cause us to increase our provision for loan losses and would adversely affect our earnings and financial condition.

Imposition of limits by the bank regulators on commercial real estate lending activities could curtail our growth and adversely affect our earnings.

In 2006, the federal banking regulators issued joint guidance entitled “Concentrations in Commercial Real Estate Lending, Sound Risk Management Practices,” or the CRE Guidance. Although the CRE Guidance did not establish specific lending limits, it provides that a bank’s commercial real estate lending exposure could receive increased supervisory scrutiny where total non-owner-occupied commercial real estate loans, including loans secured by apartment buildings, investor commercial real estate, and construction and land loans, represent 300% or more of an institution’s total risk-based capital, and the outstanding balance of the commercial real estate loan portfolio has increased by 50% or more during the preceding 36 months. Our total non-owner-occupied commercial real estate loans, including loans secured by apartment buildings, investor commercial real estate, and construction and land loans, represented 333.0% of its total risk-based capital at December 31, 2018.  However, the ratio has decreased since December 31, 2017 when it was at 354.7%.  

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In December 2015, the federal banking regulators released a new statement on prudent risk management for commercial real estate lending, referred to herein as the 2015 Statement. In the 2015 Statement, the federal banking regulators, among other things, indicate the intent to continue “to pay special attention” to commercial real estate lending activities and concentrations going forward. If the Federal Reserve, our primary federal regulator, were to impose restrictions on the amount of commercial real estate loans we can hold in our portfolio, for reasons noted above or otherwise, our earnings would be adversely affected.

Our commercial business lending activities expose us to additional lending risks.

We make commercial business loans in our market area to a variety of professionals, sole proprietorships, partnerships and corporations. As compared to commercial real estate loans, which are secured by real property, the value of which tends to be more easily ascertainable, commercial business loans are of higher risk and typically are made on the basis of the borrower’s ability to make repayment from the cash flow of the borrower’s business. As a result, the availability of funds for the repayment of commercial business loans may depend substantially on the success of the business itself. Further, any collateral securing such loans may depreciate over time, may be difficult to appraise, may fluctuate in value and may depend on the borrower’s ability to collect receivables. We have increased our focus on commercial business lending in recent years and intend to continue to focus on this type of lending in the future.

Our concentration of residential mortgage loans exposes us to increased lending risks.

At December 31, 2018, $94.7 million, or 12.3%, of our loan portfolio was secured by one-to-four family real estate, a significant majority of which is located in the Puget Sound region. One-to-four family residential mortgage lending is generally sensitive to regional and local economic conditions that significantly impact the ability of borrowers to meet their loan payment obligations, making loss levels difficult to predict. A decline in residential real estate values as a result of a downturn in the Puget Sound housing market could reduce the value of the real estate collateral securing these types of loans. Declines in real estate values could cause some of our residential mortgages to be inadequately collateralized, which would expose us to a greater risk of loss if we seek to recover on defaulted loans by selling the real estate collateral.

Our origination of construction loans exposes us to increased lending risks.

We originate commercial construction loans primarily to professional builders for the construction of one-to-four family residences, apartment buildings, and commercial real estate properties. To a lesser degree, we also originate land acquisition loans for the purpose of facilitating the ultimate construction of a home or commercial building. Our construction loans present a greater level of risk than loans secured by improved, occupied real estate due to: (1) the increased difficulty at the time the loan is made of estimating the building costs and the selling price of the property to be built; (2) the increased difficulty and costs of monitoring the loan; (3) the higher degree of sensitivity to increases in market rates of interest; and (4) the increased difficulty of working out loan problems. In addition, construction costs may exceed original estimates as a result of increased materials, labor or other costs. Construction loans also often involve the disbursement of funds with repayment dependent, in part, on the success of the project and the ability of the borrower to sell or lease the property or refinance the indebtedness.

The small to medium-sized businesses that we lend to may have fewer resources to endure adverse business developments than larger firms, which may impair our borrowers’ ability to repay loans.

We focus our business development and marketing strategy primarily on small to medium-sized businesses. Small to medium-sized businesses frequently have smaller market shares than larger firms, may be more vulnerable to economic downturns, often need substantial additional capital to expand or compete and may experience substantial volatility in operating results, any of which may impair a borrower’s ability to repay a loan. In addition, the success of a small and medium-sized business often depends on the management skills, talents and efforts of a small group of people, and the death, disability or resignation of one or more of these people could have an adverse effect on the business and its ability to repay its loan. If our borrowers are unable to repay their loans, our business, financial condition and earnings could be adversely affected.

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We may not be able to adequately measure and limit our credit risk, which could lead to unexpected losses.

The business of lending is inherently risky, including risks that the principal of or interest on any loan will not be repaid timely or at all or that the value of any collateral supporting the loan will be insufficient to cover our outstanding exposure. These risks may be affected by the strength of the borrower’s business sector and local, regional and national market and economic conditions. Many of our loans are made to small to medium-sized businesses that may be less able to withstand competitive, economic and financial pressures than larger borrowers. Our risk management practices, such as monitoring the concentration of our loans within specific industries and our credit approval practices, may not adequately reduce credit risk, and our credit administration personnel, policies and procedures may not adequately adapt to changes in economic or any other conditions affecting customers and the quality of the loan portfolio. A failure to effectively measure and limit the credit risk associated with our loan portfolio could lead to unexpected losses and have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

If our allowance for loan losses is insufficient to absorb actual loan losses, our results of operations would be negatively affected.

In determining the amount of the allowance for loan losses, we analyze our loss and delinquency experience by loan categories and we consider the effect of existing economic conditions. In addition, we make various assumptions and judgments about the collectability of our loan portfolio, including the creditworthiness of our borrowers and the value of the real estate and other assets serving as collateral for the repayment of many of our loans. If the actual results are different from our estimates, or our analyses are incorrect, our allowance for loan losses may not be sufficient to cover losses inherent in our loan portfolio, which would require additions to our allowance and would decrease our net income. Our emphasis on loan growth and on increasing our portfolio, as well as any future credit deterioration, will require us to increase our allowance further in the future.

In addition, our banking regulators periodically review our allowance for loan losses and could require us to increase our provision for loan losses. Any increase in our allowance for loan losses or loan charge-offs as required by regulatory authorities may have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and financial condition.

Nonperforming assets take significant time and resources to resolve and adversely affect our earnings and financial condition.

Nonperforming assets adversely affect our net income in various ways. We generally do not record interest income on other real estate owned, or OREO, or on nonperforming loans, thereby adversely affecting our income and increasing loan administration costs. When we take collateral in foreclosures and similar proceedings, we are required to mark the related asset to the then fair market value of the collateral, which may ultimately result in a loss. An increase in our level of nonperforming assets increases our risk profile and may impact the capital levels regulators believe are appropriate in light of the ensuing risk profile. While we seek to reduce problem assets through loan workouts, restructurings and otherwise, decreases in the value of the underlying collateral, or in these borrowers’ performance or financial condition, whether or not due to economic and market conditions beyond our control, could have a material effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, the resolution of nonperforming assets requires significant commitments of time from management, which may materially and adversely impact their ability to perform their other responsibilities. We may not experience future increases in the value of nonperforming assets.

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Our Small Business Administration, or SBA, lending program is dependent upon the U.S. federal government, and we face specific risks associated with originating SBA loans.

Our SBA lending program is dependent upon the U.S. federal government. As an approved participant in the SBA Preferred Lender’s Program, referred to herein as an SBA Preferred Lender, we enable our clients to obtain SBA loans without being subject to the potentially lengthy SBA approval process necessary for lenders that are not SBA Preferred Lenders. The SBA periodically reviews the lending operations of participating lenders to assess, among other things, whether the lender exhibits prudent risk management. When weaknesses are identified, the SBA may request corrective actions or impose enforcement actions, including revocation of the lender’s SBA Preferred Lender status. If we lose our status as an SBA Preferred Lender, we may lose some or all of our customers to lenders who are SBA Preferred Lenders, and as a result we could experience a material adverse effect to our financial results. Any changes to the SBA program, including but not limited to changes to the level of guarantee provided by the federal government on SBA loans, changes to program specific rules impacting volume eligibility under the guaranty program, as well as changes to the program amounts authorized by Congress or exhaustion of the available funding for SBA programs may also have a material adverse effect on our business. In addition, any default by the U.S. government on its obligations or any prolonged government shutdown could, among other things, impede our ability to originate SBA loans or sell such loans in the secondary market, which could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

The SBA’s 7(a) Loan Program is the SBA’s primary program for helping start-up and existing small businesses, with financing guaranteed for a variety of general business purposes. Generally, we sell the guaranteed portion of our SBA 7(a) loans in the secondary market. These sales result in premium income for us at the time of sale and create a stream of future servicing income, as we retain the servicing rights to these loans. For the reasons described above, we may not be able to continue originating these loans or sell them in the secondary market. Furthermore, even if we are able to continue to originate and sell SBA 7(a) loans in the secondary market, we might not continue to realize premiums upon the sale of the guaranteed portion of these loans or the premiums may decline due to economic and competitive factors. When we originate SBA loans, we incur credit risk on the non-guaranteed portion of the loans, and if a customer defaults on a loan, we share any loss and recovery related to the loan pro-rata with the SBA. If the SBA establishes that a loss on an SBA guaranteed loan is attributable to significant technical deficiencies in the manner in which the loan was originated, funded or serviced by us, the SBA may seek recovery of the principal loss related to the deficiency from us. Generally, we do not maintain reserves or loss allowances for such potential claims and any such claims could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

The laws, regulations and standard operating procedures that are applicable to SBA loan products may change in the future. We cannot predict the effects of these changes on our business and profitability. Because government regulation greatly affects the business and financial results of all commercial banks and bank holding companies and especially our organization, changes in the laws, regulations and procedures applicable to SBA loans could adversely affect our ability to operate profitably.

The geographic concentration of our loan portfolio and lending activities makes us vulnerable to a downturn in the economy of the Puget Sound region.

While there is not a single employer or industry in our market area on which a significant number of our customers are dependent, a substantial portion of our loan portfolio is comprised of loans secured by property located in the Puget Sound region. This makes us vulnerable to a downturn in the local economy and real estate markets. Adverse conditions in the local economy such as unemployment, recession, a catastrophic event or other factors beyond our control could impact the ability of our borrowers to repay their loans, which could impact our net interest income. Uncertainties have arisen regarding the potential for a reversal or renegotiation of international trade agreements under the current administration, and the impact such actions and other policies of the current administration may have on economic and market conditions. In addition, concerns about the performance of international economies, especially in Europe and emerging markets, and economic conditions in Asia, particularly the economies of China, South Korea and Japan, can impact the economy and financial markets here in the United States. If the national, regional and local economies experience worsening economic conditions, including high levels of unemployment, our growth and profitability could be constrained. Weak economic conditions are characterized by, among other indicators, deflation, elevated levels of unemployment, fluctuations in debt and equity

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capital markets, increased delinquencies on mortgage, commercial and consumer loans, residential and commercial real estate price declines, and lower home sales and commercial activity. All of these factors are generally detrimental to our business. Our business is significantly affected by monetary and other regulatory policies of the U.S. federal government, its agencies and government-sponsored entities. Changes in any of these policies are influenced by macroeconomic conditions and other factors that are beyond our control, are difficult to predict and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial position, results of operations and growth prospects. In addition, decreases in local real estate values caused by economic conditions, recent changes in tax laws or other events could adversely affect the value of the property used as collateral for our loans, which could cause us to realize a loss in the event of a foreclosure. Further, deterioration in local economic conditions could drive the level of loan losses beyond the level we have provided for in our allowance for loan losses, which in turn could necessitate an increase in our provision for loan losses and a resulting reduction to our earnings and capital.

Economic conditions could result in increases in our level of nonperforming loans and/or reduce demand for our products and services, which could have an adverse effect on our results of operations.

Prolonged deteriorating economic conditions could significantly affect the markets in which we do business, the value of our loans and investment securities, and our ongoing operations, costs and profitability. Further, declines in real estate values and sales volumes and elevated unemployment levels may result in higher loan delinquencies, increases in our nonperforming and classified assets and a decline in demand for our products and services. These events may cause us to incur losses and may adversely affect our financial condition and earnings. Reduction in problem assets can be slow, and the process can be exacerbated by the condition of the properties securing nonperforming loans and the lengthy foreclosure process in Washington. To the extent that we must work through the resolution of assets, economic problems may cause us to incur losses and adversely affect our capital, liquidity, and financial condition.

Appraisals and other valuation techniques we use in evaluating and monitoring loans secured by real property, other real estate owned and repossessed personal property may not accurately describe the net value of the asset.

In considering whether to make a loan secured by real property, we generally require an appraisal of the property. However, an appraisal is only an estimate of the value of the property at the time the appraisal is made, and, as real estate values may change significantly in relatively short periods of time (especially in periods of heightened economic uncertainty), this estimate may not accurately describe the net value of the real property collateral after the loan is made. As a result, we may not be able to realize the full amount of any remaining indebtedness when we foreclose on and sell the relevant property. In addition, we rely on appraisals and other valuation techniques to establish the value of our OREO, and personal property that we acquire through foreclosure proceedings and to determine certain loan impairments. If any of these valuations are inaccurate, our financial statements may not reflect the correct value of our OREO, and our allowance for loan losses may not reflect accurate loan impairments. This could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations. As of December 31, 2018, we did not hold any OREO or repossessed property and equipment.

Ineffective liquidity management could adversely affect our financial condition and earnings.

Effective liquidity management is essential for the operation of our business. We require sufficient liquidity to meet customer loan requests, customer deposit maturities/withdrawals, payments on our debt obligations as they come due and other cash commitments under both normal operating conditions and other unpredictable circumstances causing industry or general financial market stress. Our access to funding sources in amounts adequate to finance our activities on terms that are acceptable to us could be impaired by factors that affect us specifically or the financial services industry or economy generally. Factors that could detrimentally impact our access to liquidity sources include a downturn in the geographic markets in which our loans and operations are concentrated or difficult credit markets. Our access to deposits may also be affected by the liquidity needs of our depositors. In particular, a majority of our liabilities are checking accounts and other liquid deposits, which are payable on demand or upon several days’ notice, while by comparison, a substantial majority of our assets are loans, which cannot be called or sold in the same time frame. Although we have historically been able to replace maturing deposits and advances as necessary, we might not be able to replace such funds in the future, especially if a large number of our depositors seek to withdraw their accounts, regardless of the reason. A failure to maintain adequate liquidity could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

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Our agreement with Aspiration may produce limited revenue and may expose us to liability for compliance violations by Aspiration.

We have entered into an agreement with Aspiration, an online investment platform that offers socially-conscious and sustainable banking and investing, pursuant to which we will provide certain banking services for Aspiration’s new cash management account program that Aspiration launched in the fourth quarter of 2018, including serving as the issuing bank for debit cards issued to Aspiration’s customers and establishing one or more settlement accounts for the purpose of settling customer transactions in the cash management account program. The agreement with Aspiration has an initial term (subject to two automatic renewals for successive 12-month terms) of three years from November 23, 2018 it may be earlier terminated by the parties under certain circumstances. If Aspiration is not successful in achieving customer acceptance of its cash management account program or terminates the agreement before the end of its term, our revenue under the agreement may be limited or may cease altogether. In addition, because we will provide banking services with respect to the cash features of Aspiration’s cash management account program, our bank regulators may hold us responsible for Aspiration’s activities with respect to the marketing or administration of Aspiration’s cash management account program, which may result in increased compliance costs for us or potentially compliance violations as a result of Aspiration’s activities.

Our business strategy includes growth, and our financial condition and results of operations could be negatively affected if we fail to grow or fail to manage our growth effectively. Growing our operations could also cause our expenses to increase faster than our revenues.

Our business strategy includes growth in assets, deposits and the scale of our operations. Achieving such growth will require us to attract customers that currently bank at other financial institutions in our market area. Our ability to successfully grow will depend on a variety of factors, including our ability to attract and retain experienced bankers, the continued availability of desirable business opportunities, competition from other financial institutions in our market area and our ability to manage our growth. Growth opportunities may not be available or we may not be able to manage our growth successfully. If we do not manage our growth effectively, our financial condition and operating results could be negatively affected. Furthermore, there can be considerable costs involved in expanding deposit and lending capacity that generally require a period of time to generate the necessary revenues to offset their costs, especially in areas in which we do not have an established presence and that require alternative delivery methods. Accordingly, any such business expansion can be expected to negatively impact our earnings for some period of time until certain economies of scale are reached. Our expenses could be further increased if we encounter delays in modernizing existing facilities, opening new branches or deploying new services.

We may not be able to implement our expansion strategy, which may adversely affect our ability to maintain our historical earnings trends.

Our expansion strategy focuses on organic growth, supplemented by strategic acquisitions and expansion of the Bank’s banking location network, or de novo branching. We may not be able to execute on aspects of our expansion strategy, which may impair our ability to sustain our historical rate of growth or prevent us from growing at all. More specifically, we may not be able to generate sufficient new loans and deposits within acceptable risk and expense tolerances, obtain the personnel or funding necessary for additional growth or find suitable acquisition candidates. Various factors, such as economic conditions and competition with other financial institutions, may impede or prohibit the growth of our operations, the opening of new banking locations and the consummation of acquisitions. Further, we may be unable to attract and retain experienced bankers, which could adversely affect our growth. The success of our strategy also depends on our ability to effectively manage growth, which is dependent upon a number of factors, including our ability to adapt our credit, operational, technology and governance infrastructure to accommodate expanded operations. If we fail to implement one or more aspects of our strategy, we may be unable to maintain our historical earnings trends, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

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We are subject to certain risks in connection with growing through mergers and acquisitions.

It is possible that we could acquire other banking institutions, other financial services companies or branches of banks in the future. Acquisitions typically involve the payment of a premium over book and trading values and, therefore, may result in the dilution of our tangible book value per share and/or our earnings per share. Our ability to engage in future mergers and acquisitions depends on various factors, including: (1) our ability to identify suitable merger partners and acquisition opportunities; (2) our ability to finance and complete transactions on acceptable terms and at acceptable prices; and (3) our ability to receive the necessary regulatory and, when required, shareholder approvals. Our inability to engage in an acquisition or merger for any of these reasons could have an adverse impact on the implementation of our business strategies. Furthermore, mergers and acquisitions involve a number of risks and challenges, including our ability to achieve planned synergies and to integrate the branches and operations we acquire, and the internal controls and regulatory functions into our current operations, as well as the diversion of management’s attention from existing operations, which may adversely affect our ability to successfully conduct our business and negatively impact our financial results.

We rely heavily on our executive management team and other key employees, and we could be adversely affected by the unexpected loss of their services.

Our success depends in large part on the performance of our executive management team and other key personnel, as well as on our ability to attract, motivate and retain highly qualified senior and middle management and other skilled employees. Competition for qualified employees is intense, and the process of locating key personnel with the combination of skills, attributes and business relationships required to execute our business plan may be lengthy. We may not be successful in retaining our key employees, and the unexpected loss of services of one or more of our key personnel could have an adverse effect on our business because of their skills, knowledge of and business relationships within our primary markets, years of industry experience and the difficulty of promptly finding qualified replacement personnel. If the services of any of our key personnel should become unavailable for any reason, we may not be able to identify and hire qualified persons on terms acceptable to us, or at all, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and future prospects.

We may need to raise additional capital in the future, and such capital may not be available when needed or at all.

We may need to raise additional capital, in the form of additional debt or equity, in the future to have sufficient capital resources and liquidity to meet our commitments and fund our business needs and future growth, particularly if the quality of our assets or earnings were to deteriorate significantly. Our ability to raise additional capital, if needed, will depend on, among other things, conditions in the capital markets at that time, which are outside of our control, and our financial condition. Economic conditions and a loss of confidence in financial institutions may increase our cost of funding and limit access to certain customary sources of capital or make such capital only available on unfavorable terms, including interbank borrowings, repurchase agreements and borrowings from the discount window of the Federal Reserve. We may not be able to obtain capital on acceptable terms or at all. Any occurrence that may limit our access to the capital markets, such as a decline in the confidence of debt purchasers, depositors of our bank or counterparties participating in the capital markets or other disruption in capital markets, may adversely affect our capital costs and our ability to raise capital and, in turn, our liquidity. Further, if we need to raise capital in the future, we may have to do so when many other financial institutions are also seeking to raise capital and would then have to compete with those institutions for investors. An inability to raise additional capital on acceptable terms when needed could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

We are subject to interest rate risk and fluctuations in interest rates may adversely affect our earnings.

The majority of our banking assets and liabilities are monetary in nature and subject to risk from changes in interest rates. Like most financial institutions, our earnings are significantly dependent on our net interest income, the principal component of our earnings, which is the difference between interest earned by us from our interest-earning assets, such as loans and investment securities, and interest paid by us on our interest-bearing liabilities, such as deposits and borrowings. We expect that we will periodically experience “gaps” in the interest rate sensitivities of our assets and liabilities, meaning that either our interest-bearing liabilities will be more sensitive to

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changes in market interest rates than our interest-earning assets, or vice versa. In either event, if market interest rates should move contrary to our position, this “gap” will negatively impact our earnings. The impact on earnings is more adverse when the slope of the yield curve flattens, that is, when short-term interest rates increase more than long-term interest rates or when long-term interest rates decrease more than short-term interest rates. Many factors impact interest rates, including governmental monetary policies, inflation, recession, changes in unemployment, the money supply and international economic weakness and disorder and instability in domestic and foreign financial markets. Our interest rate sensitivity profile was asset sensitive as of December 31, 2018, meaning that we estimate our net interest income would increase more from rising interest rates than from falling interest rates.

Interest rate increases often result in larger payment requirements for our borrowers, which increases the potential for default and could result in a decrease in the demand for loans. At the same time, the marketability of the property securing a loan may be adversely affected by any reduced demand resulting from higher interest rates. In a declining interest rate environment, there may be an increase in prepayments on loans as borrowers refinance their loans at lower rates. In addition, in a low interest rate environment, loan customers often pursue long-term fixed rate credits, which could adversely affect our earnings and net interest margin if rates increase. Changes in interest rates also can affect the value of loans, securities and other assets. An increase in interest rates that adversely affects the ability of borrowers to pay the principal or interest on loans may lead to an increase in nonperforming assets and a reduction of income recognized, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and cash flows. Further, when we place a loan on nonaccrual status, we reverse any accrued but unpaid interest receivable, which decreases interest income. At the same time, we continue to have a cost to fund the loan, which is reflected as interest expense, without any interest income to offset the associated funding expense. Thus, an increase in the amount of nonperforming assets would have an adverse impact on net interest income. If short-term interest rates continue to remain at their historically low levels for a prolonged period, and assuming longer-term interest rates fall further, we could experience net interest margin compression as our interest-earning assets would continue to reprice downward while our interest-bearing liability rates could fail to decline in tandem. Such an occurrence would have an adverse effect on our net interest income and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

We may be adversely affected by recent changes in U.S. tax laws and regulations.

Changes in tax laws contained in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was enacted in December 2017, include a number of provisions that will have an impact on the banking industry, borrowers and the market for residential real estate. Included in this legislation was a reduction of the corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21%. In addition, other changes included: (i) a lower limit on the deductibility of mortgage interest on single-family residential mortgage loans, (ii) the elimination of interest deductions for home equity loans, (iii) a limitation on the deductibility of business interest expense and (iv) a limitation on the deductibility of property taxes and state and local income taxes.

Further changes in income tax laws could be enacted, or interpretations of existing income tax laws could change, causing an adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations. Similarly, our accounting policies and methods are fundamental to how we report our financial condition and results of operations. Some of these policies require use of estimates and assumptions that may affect the value of our assets, liabilities, and financial results. Periodically, new accounting standards are issued or existing standards are revised, changing the methods for preparing our financial statements. These changes are not within our control and may significantly impact our financial condition and results of operations.  

We are dependent on our information technology and telecommunications systems and third-party service providers; systems failures, interruptions and cybersecurity breaches could have a material adverse effect on us.

Our business is dependent on the successful and uninterrupted functioning of our information technology and telecommunications systems and third-party service providers. The failure of these systems, or the termination of a third-party software license or service agreement on which any of these systems is based, could interrupt our operations. Because our information technology and telecommunications systems interface with and depend on third-party systems, we could experience service denials if demand for such services exceeds capacity or such third-party systems fail or experience interruptions. If significant, sustained or repeated, a system failure or service denial could compromise our ability to operate effectively, damage our reputation, result in a loss of customer business, and/or subject us to additional regulatory scrutiny and possible financial liability, any of which could have a material adverse effect on us.

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Our third-party service providers may be vulnerable to unauthorized access, computer viruses, phishing schemes and other security breaches. We likely will expend additional resources to protect against the threat of such security breaches and computer viruses, or to alleviate problems caused by such security breaches or viruses. To the extent that the activities of our third-party service providers or the activities of our customers involve the storage and transmission of confidential information, security breaches and viruses could expose us to claims, regulatory scrutiny, litigation costs and other possible liabilities.

Security breaches and cybersecurity threats could compromise our information and expose us to liability, which would cause our business and reputation to suffer.

In the ordinary course of our business, we collect and store sensitive data, including our proprietary business information and that of our customers, suppliers and business partners, as well as personally identifiable information about our customers and employees. The secure processing, maintenance and transmission of this information is critical to our operations and business strategy. We, our customers, and other financial institutions with which we interact, are subject to ongoing, continuous attempts to penetrate key systems by individual hackers, organized criminals, and in some cases, state-sponsored organizations. While we have established policies and procedures to prevent or limit the impact of cyber-attacks, there can be no assurance that such events will not occur or will be adequately addressed if they do. In addition, we also outsource certain cybersecurity functions, such as penetration testing, to third-party service providers, and the failure of these service providers to adequately perform such functions could increase our exposure to security breaches and cybersecurity threats. Despite our security measures, our information technology and infrastructure may be vulnerable to attacks by hackers or breached due to employee error, malfeasance or other malicious code and cyber-attacks that could have an impact on information security. Any such breach or attacks could compromise our networks and the information stored there could be accessed, publicly disclosed, lost or stolen. Any such unauthorized access, disclosure or other loss of information could result in legal claims or proceedings, liability under laws that protect the privacy of personal information, and regulatory penalties; disrupt our operations and the services we provide to customers; damage our reputation; and cause a loss of confidence in our products and services, all of which could adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

We must keep pace with technological change to remain competitive.

Financial products and services have become increasingly technology-driven. Our ability to meet the needs of our customers competitively, and in a cost-efficient manner, is dependent on the ability to keep pace with technological advances and to invest in new technology as it becomes available, as well as related essential personnel. In addition, technology has lowered barriers to entry into the financial services market and made it possible for financial technology companies and other non-bank entities to offer financial products and services traditionally provided by banks. The ability to keep pace with technological change is important, and the failure to do so, due to cost, proficiency or otherwise, could have a material adverse impact on our business and therefore on our financial condition and results of operations.

Because the nature of the financial services business involves a high volume of transactions, we face significant operational risks.

We rely on the ability of our employees and systems to process a high number of transactions. Operational risk is the risk of loss resulting from our operations, including but not limited to, the risk of fraud by employees or outside persons, the execution of unauthorized transactions by employees, errors relating to transaction processing and technology, breaches of our internal control system and compliance requirements, and business continuation and disaster recovery. Insurance coverage may not be available for such losses, or where available, such losses may exceed insurance limits. This risk of loss also includes the potential legal actions that could arise as a result of an operational deficiency or as a result of noncompliance with applicable regulations, adverse business decisions or their implementation, and customer attrition due to potential negative publicity. Although our control testing has not identified any significant deficiencies in our internal control system, a breakdown in our internal control system, improper operation of our systems or improper employee actions could result in material financial loss to us, the imposition of regulatory action, and damage to our reputation.

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We are subject to laws regarding the privacy, information security and protection of personal information and any violation of these laws or another incident involving personal, confidential or proprietary information of individuals could damage our reputation and otherwise adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

Our business requires the collection and retention of large volumes of customer data, including personally identifiable information in various information systems that we maintain and in those maintained by third parties with whom we contract to provide data services. We also maintain important internal company data such as personally identifiable information about our employees and information relating to our operations. We are subject to complex and evolving laws and regulations governing the privacy and protection of personal information of individuals (including customers, employees, suppliers and other third parties). For example, our business is subject to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act which, among other things: (i) imposes certain limitations on our ability to share nonpublic personal information about our customers with nonaffiliated third parties; (ii) requires that we provide certain disclosures to customers about our information collection, sharing and security practices and afford customers the right to “opt out” of any information sharing by us with nonaffiliated third parties (with certain exceptions); and (iii) requires that we develop, implement and maintain a written comprehensive information security program containing appropriate safeguards based on our size and complexity, the nature and scope of our activities, and the sensitivity of customer information we process, as well as plans for responding to data security breaches. Various state and federal laws and regulations impose data security breach notification requirements with varying levels of individual, consumer, regulatory or law enforcement notification in certain circumstances in the event of a security breach. Ensuring that our collection, use, transfer and storage of personal information complies with all applicable laws and regulations can increase our costs.

Furthermore, we may not be able to ensure that all of our clients, suppliers, counterparties and other third parties have appropriate controls in place to protect the confidentiality of the information that they exchange with us, particularly where such information is transmitted by electronic means. If personal, confidential or proprietary information of customers or others were to be mishandled or misused (in situations where, for example, such information was erroneously provided to parties who are not permitted to have the information, or where such information was intercepted or otherwise compromised by third parties), we could be exposed to litigation or regulatory sanctions under personal information laws and regulations. Concerns regarding the effectiveness of our measures to safeguard personal information, or even the perception that such measures are inadequate, could cause us to lose customers or potential customers for our products and services and thereby reduce our revenues. Accordingly, any failure or perceived failure to comply with applicable privacy or data protection laws and regulations may subject us to inquiries, examinations and investigations that could result in requirements to modify or cease certain operations or practices or in significant liabilities, fines or penalties, and could damage our reputation and otherwise adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

We are dependent on the use of data and modeling in our management’s decision-making, and faulty data or modeling approaches could negatively impact our decision-making ability or possibly subject us to regulatory scrutiny in the future.

The use of statistical and quantitative models and other quantitative analyses is widespread in bank decision-making, and the employment of such analyses is becoming increasingly widespread in our operations. Liquidity stress testing, interest rate sensitivity analysis, and the identification of possible violations of anti-money laundering regulations are all examples of areas in which we are dependent on models and the data that underlies them. The use of statistical and quantitative models is also becoming more prevalent in regulatory compliance. While we are not currently subject to annual stress testing under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, or the Dodd-Frank Act, we anticipate that model-derived testing may become more extensively implemented by regulators in the future.

We anticipate data-based modeling will penetrate further into bank decision-making, particularly risk management efforts, as the capacities developed to meet rigorous stress testing requirements are able to be employed more widely and in differing applications. While we believe these quantitative techniques and approaches improve our decision-making, they also create the possibility that faulty data or flawed quantitative approaches could negatively impact our decision-making ability or, if we become subject to regulatory stress testing in the future, adverse regulatory scrutiny. Further, because of the complexity inherent in these approaches, misunderstanding or misuse of their outputs could similarly result in suboptimal decision-making.

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We depend on the accuracy and completeness of information provided to us by our borrowers and counterparties and any misrepresented information could adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

In deciding whether to approve loans or to enter into other transactions with borrowers and counterparties, we rely on information furnished to us by, or on behalf of, borrowers and counterparties, including financial statements, credit reports and other financial information. We also rely on representations of borrowers and counterparties as to the accuracy and completeness of that information and, with respect to financial statements, on reports of independent auditors. If any of this information is intentionally or negligently misrepresented and such misrepresentation is not detected prior to loan funding, the value of the loan may be significantly lower than expected and we may be subject to regulatory action. Whether a misrepresentation is made by the loan applicant, another third party, or one of our employees, we generally bear the risk of loss associated with the misrepresentation. Our controls and processes may not have detected, or may not detect all, misrepresented information in our loan originations or from our business clients. Any such misrepresented information could adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

We are subject to certain operational risks, including, but not limited to, customer, employee or third-party fraud and data processing system failures and errors.

Because we are a financial institution, employee errors and employee or customer misconduct could subject us in particular to financial losses or regulatory sanctions and seriously harm our reputation. Misconduct by our employees could include hiding unauthorized activities from us, improper or unauthorized activities on behalf of our customers or improper use of confidential information, each of which can be particularly damaging for financial institutions. It is not always possible to prevent employee errors and misconduct, and the precautions we take to prevent and detect this activity may not be effective in all cases. Employee errors could also subject us to financial claims for negligence.

We maintain a system of internal controls to mitigate operational risks, including data processing system failures and errors and customer or employee fraud, as well as insurance coverage designed to protect us from material losses associated with these risks, including losses resulting from any associated business interruption. If our internal controls fail to prevent or detect an occurrence, or if any resulting loss is not insured or exceeds applicable insurance limits, it could adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

The building of market share through our branch office strategy, and our ability to achieve profitability on new branch offices, may increase our expenses and negatively affect our earnings.

We believe there are branch expansion opportunities within our market area and adjacent markets and will seek to grow our deposit base by adding branches to our existing network. There are considerable costs involved in opening branch offices, especially in light of the capabilities needed to compete in today’s environment. Moreover, new branch offices generally require a period of time to generate sufficient revenues to offset their costs, especially in areas in which we do not have an established presence. Accordingly, new branch offices could negatively impact our earnings and may do so for some period of time. Our investments in products and services, and the related personnel required to implement new policies and procedures, take time to earn returns and can be expected to negatively impact our earnings for the foreseeable future. The profitability of our expansion strategy will depend on whether the income that we generate from the new branch offices will offset the increased expenses resulting from operating these branch offices.

Strong competition within our market area could hurt our profits and slow growth.

Our profitability depends upon our continued ability to compete successfully in our market area. We face intense competition both in making loans and attracting deposits. Our competitors for commercial real estate loans include other community banks and commercial lenders, some of which are larger than us and have greater resources and lending limits than we have and offer services that we do not provide. We face stiff competition for one-to-four family residential loans from other financial service providers, including large national residential lenders and local community banks. Other competitors for one-to-four family residential loans include credit unions and mortgage brokers which keep overhead costs and mortgage rates down by selling loans and not holding or servicing them. Price competition for loans and deposits might result in us earning less on our loans and paying more on our deposits, which reduces net interest income. We expect competition to remain strong in the future.

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The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions, or Washington DFI, recently entered into a multi-state agreement with six other states that is intended to streamline the licensing process for money service businesses, which include money transmitters and payment service providers. Increasing the relative ease of obtaining a license to operate a money service business within the state of Washington may encourage financial technology, or fintech, companies to offer services in the state, thereby increasing competition for such services.

Negative public opinion regarding our company or failure to maintain our reputation in the communities we serve could adversely affect our business and prevent us from growing our business.

As a community bank, our reputation within the communities we serve is critical to our success. We believe we have set ourselves apart from our competitors by building strong personal and professional relationships with our customers and being active members of the communities we serve. As such, we strive to enhance our reputation by recruiting, hiring and retaining employees who share our core values of being an integral part of the communities we serve and delivering superior service to our customers. If our reputation is negatively affected by the actions of our employees or otherwise, we may be less successful in attracting new talent and customers or may lose existing customers, and our business, financial condition and earnings could be adversely affected. Further, negative public opinion can expose us to litigation and regulatory action and delay and impede our efforts to implement our expansion strategy, which could further adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

We could recognize losses on investment securities held in our securities portfolio, particularly if interest rates increase or economic and market conditions deteriorate.

While we attempt to invest a significant majority of our total assets in loans (our loan-to-asset ratio was 80.7% as of December 31, 2018), we invest a percentage of our total assets (4.0% as of December 31, 2018) in investment securities with the primary objectives of providing a source of liquidity and meeting pledging requirements. As of December 31, 2018, the fair value of our available for sale investment securities portfolio was $36.7 million, which included a net unrealized loss of $1.6 million. Factors beyond our control can significantly and adversely influence the fair value of securities in our portfolio. For example, fixed-rate securities are generally subject to decreases in market value when interest rates rise. Additional factors include, but are not limited to, rating agency downgrades of the securities, defaults by the issuer or individual borrowers with respect to the underlying securities, and instability in the credit markets. Any of the foregoing factors could cause other-than-temporary impairment in future periods and result in realized losses. The process for determining whether impairment is other-than-temporary usually requires difficult, subjective judgments about the future financial performance of the issuer and any collateral underlying the security in order to assess the probability of receiving all contractual principal and interest payments on the security. Although we have not recognized other-than-temporary impairment related to our investment portfolio as of December 31, 2018, changing economic and market conditions affecting interest rates, the financial condition of issuers of the securities and the performance of the underlying collateral, among other factors, may cause us to recognize losses in future periods, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

The accuracy of our financial statements and related disclosures could be affected if the judgments, assumptions or estimates used in our critical accounting policies are inaccurate.

The preparation of financial statements and related disclosures in conformity with GAAP requires us to make judgments, assumptions and estimates that affect the amounts reported in our consolidated financial statements and related notes to those financial statements. Our critical accounting policies, which are included in the section entitled “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in this report, describe those significant accounting policies and methods used in the preparation of our consolidated financial statements that we consider “critical” because they require judgments, assumptions and estimates that materially affect our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures. As a result, if future events or regulatory views concerning such analysis differ significantly from the judgments, assumptions and estimates in our critical accounting policies, those events or assumptions could have a material impact on our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures, in each case resulting in our needing to revise or restate prior period financial statements, cause damage to our reputation and the price of our common stock, and adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

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We expect that the implementation of a new accounting standard could require us to increase our allowance for loan losses and may have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

The FASB, has adopted a new accounting standard that will be effective for our first fiscal year after December 15, 2019. This standard, referred to as Current Expected Credit Loss, or CECL, will require financial institutions to determine periodic estimates of lifetime expected credit losses on loans, and provide for the expected credit losses as allowances for loan losses. This will change the current method of providing allowances for loan losses that are probable, which we expect could require us to increase our allowance for loan losses, and will likely greatly increase the data we would need to collect and review to determine the appropriate level of the allowance for loan losses. Any increase in our allowance for loan losses, or expenses incurred to determine the appropriate level of the allowance for loan losses, may have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

We may be subject to environmental liabilities in connection with the real properties we own and the foreclosure on real estate assets securing our loan portfolio.

In the course of our business, we may purchase real estate in connection with our acquisition and expansion efforts, or we may foreclose on and take title to real estate or otherwise be deemed to be in control of property that serves as collateral on loans we make. As a result, we could be subject to environmental liabilities with respect to those properties. We may be held liable to a governmental entity or to third parties for property damage, personal injury, investigation and clean-up costs incurred by these parties in connection with environmental contamination, or we may be required to investigate or clean up hazardous or toxic substances or chemical releases at a property. The costs associated with investigation or remediation activities could be substantial. In addition, if we are the owner or former owner of a contaminated site, we may be subject to common law claims by third parties based on damages and costs resulting from environmental contamination emanating from the property.

The cost of removal or abatement may substantially exceed the value of the affected properties or the loans secured by those properties, we may not have adequate remedies against the prior owners or other responsible parties and we may not be able to resell the affected properties either before or after completion of any such removal or abatement procedures. If material environmental problems are discovered before foreclosure, we generally will not foreclose on the related collateral or will transfer ownership of the loan to a subsidiary. It should be noted, however, that the transfer of the property or loans to a subsidiary may not protect us from environmental liability. Furthermore, despite these actions on our part, the value of the property as collateral will generally be substantially reduced or we may elect not to foreclose on the property and, as a result, we may suffer a loss upon collection of the loan. Any significant environmental liabilities could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Risks Related to Our Industry

Regulation of the financial services industry is intense, and we may be adversely affected by changes in laws and regulations.

We are subject to extensive government regulation, supervision and examination. Such regulation, supervision and examination govern the activities in which we may engage, and are intended primarily for the protection of the deposit insurance fund and the Bank’s depositors, rather than for shareholders.

In 2010 and 2011, in response to the financial crisis and recession that began in 2008, significant regulatory and legislative changes resulted in broad reform and increased regulation affecting financial institutions. The Dodd-Frank Act has created a significant shift in the way financial institutions operate. The Dodd-Frank Act also created the CFPB, to implement consumer protection and fair lending laws, a function that was formerly performed by the depository institution regulators. The Dodd-Frank Act contains various provisions designed to enhance the regulation of depository institutions and prevent the recurrence of a financial crisis such as that which occurred in 2008 and 2009. The Dodd-Frank Act has had and may continue to have a material impact on our operations, particularly through increased regulatory burden and compliance costs. On May 24, 2018, the EGRRCPA, became law. Among other things, the EGRRCPA changes certain of the regulatory requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act and includes provisions intended to relieve the regulatory burden on community banks. We cannot currently predict the impact of this legislation on us. Any future legislative changes could have a material impact on our profitability, the value of assets held for investment or the value of collateral for loans. Future legislative changes could also require changes to business practices and potentially expose us to additional costs, liabilities, enforcement action and reputational risk.

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Federal regulatory agencies have the ability to take strong supervisory actions against financial institutions that have experienced increased loan production and losses and other underwriting weaknesses or have compliance weaknesses. These actions include entering into formal or informal written agreements and cease and desist orders that place certain limitations on their operations. If we were to become subject to a regulatory action, such action could negatively impact our ability to execute our business plan, and result in operational restrictions, as well as our ability to grow, pay dividends, repurchase stock or engage in mergers and acquisitions. See Item 1:  Business—Supervision and Regulation—Bank Regulation and Supervision—Capital Adequacy” for a discussion of regulatory capital requirements.

Federal banking agencies periodically conduct examinations of our business, including compliance with laws and regulations, and our failure to comply with any supervisory actions to which we are or become subject as a result of such examinations could adversely affect us.

As part of the bank regulatory process, the Federal Reserve and the Washington DFI periodically conduct comprehensive examinations of our business, including compliance with laws and regulations. If, as a result of an examination, either of these banking agencies were to determine that the financial condition, capital resources, asset quality, earnings prospects, management, liquidity, asset sensitivity, risk management or other aspects of any of our operations had become unsatisfactory, or that our Company, the Bank or their respective management were in violation of any law or regulation, it may take a number of different remedial actions as it deems appropriate. The Federal Reserve may enjoin “unsafe or unsound” practices or violations of law, require affirmative actions to correct any conditions resulting from any violation or practice, issue an administrative order that can be judicially enforced, direct an increase in our capital levels, restrict our growth, assess civil monetary penalties against us, the Bank or their respective officers or directors, and remove officers and directors. The FDIC also has authority to review our financial condition, and, if the FDIC were to conclude that the Bank or its directors were engaged in unsafe or unsound practices, that the Bank was in an unsafe or unsound condition to continue operations, or the Bank or the directors violated applicable law, the FDIC could move to terminate the Bank’s deposit insurance. If we become subject to such regulatory actions, our business, financial condition, earnings and reputation could be adversely affected.

Many of our new activities and expansion plans require regulatory approvals, and failure to obtain these approvals may restrict our growth.

We intend to complement and expand our business by pursuing strategic acquisitions of financial institutions and other complementary businesses, and expansion of the Bank’s banking location network, or de novo branching. Generally, we must receive federal and state regulatory approval before we can acquire a depository institution or related business insured by the FDIC or before we open a de novo branch. In determining whether to approve a proposed acquisition, federal banking regulators will consider, among other factors, the effect of the acquisition on competition, our financial condition, our future prospects, and the impact of the proposal on U.S. financial stability. The regulators also review current and projected capital ratios and levels, the competence, experience and integrity of management and its record of compliance with laws and regulations, the convenience and needs of the communities to be served (including the acquiring institution’s record of compliance under the CRA) and the effectiveness of the acquiring institution in combating money laundering activities. Such regulatory approvals may not be granted on terms that are acceptable to us, or at all.

Financial institutions, such as the Bank, face a risk of noncompliance with and enforcement action under the Bank Secrecy Act and other anti-money laundering statutes and regulations.

The Bank Secrecy Act, the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001, or the USA PATRIOT Act, and other laws and regulations require financial institutions, among other duties, to institute and maintain an effective anti-money laundering program and file suspicious activity and currency transaction reports as appropriate. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, established by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, or the Treasury Department, to administer the Bank Secrecy Act, has authority to impose significant civil money penalties for violations of these requirements and has recently engaged in coordinated enforcement efforts with the individual federal banking regulators, as well as the U.S. Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration and the Internal Revenue Service. There is also increased scrutiny of compliance with the sanctions programs and rules administered and enforced by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.

38


 

In order to comply with regulations, guidelines and examination procedures in this area, we have dedicated significant resources to our anti-money laundering program. If our policies, procedures and systems are deemed deficient, we could be subject to liability, including fines and regulatory actions such as restrictions on our ability to pay dividends and the inability to obtain regulatory approvals to proceed with certain aspects of our business plans, including acquisitions and de novo branching.

We are subject to numerous laws designed to protect consumers, including the CRA and fair lending laws, and failure to comply with these laws could lead to a wide variety of sanctions.

The CRA requires the Federal Reserve to assess the Bank’s performance in meeting the credit needs of the communities it serves, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, and if the Federal Reserve determines that the Bank needs to improve its performance or is in substantial non-compliance with CRA requirements, various adverse regulatory consequences may ensue. In addition, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Fair Housing Act and other fair lending laws and regulations impose nondiscriminatory lending requirements on financial institutions. The CFPB, the U.S. Department of Justice and other federal agencies are responsible for enforcing these laws and regulations. The CFPB was created under the Dodd-Frank Act to centralize responsibility for consumer financial protection with broad rulemaking authority to administer and carry out the purposes and objectives of federal consumer financial laws with respect to all financial institutions that offer financial products and services to consumers. The CFPB is also authorized to prescribe rules applicable to any covered person or service provider, identifying and prohibiting acts or practices that are “unfair, deceptive, or abusive” in connection with any transaction with a consumer for a consumer financial product or service, or the offering of a consumer financial product or service. The ongoing broad rulemaking powers of the CFPB have potential to have a significant impact on the operations of financial institutions offering consumer financial products or services.

A successful regulatory challenge to an institution’s performance under the CRA, fair lending laws or regulations, or consumer lending laws and regulations could result in a wide variety of sanctions, including damages and civil money penalties, injunctive relief, restrictions on mergers and acquisitions activity, restrictions on expansion, and restrictions on entering new business lines. Private parties may also have the ability to challenge an institution’s performance under fair lending laws in private class action litigation. Such actions could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Federal, state and local consumer lending laws may restrict our ability to originate certain mortgage loans or increase our risk of liability with respect to such loans and could increase our cost of doing business.

Federal, state and local laws have been adopted that are intended to eliminate certain lending practices considered “predatory.” These laws prohibit practices such as steering borrowers away from more affordable products, selling unnecessary insurance to borrowers, repeatedly refinancing loans and making loans without a reasonable expectation that the borrowers will be able to repay the loans irrespective of the value of the underlying property. It is our policy not to make predatory loans, but these laws create the potential for liability with respect to our lending activities. They increase our cost of doing business and, ultimately, may prevent us from making certain loans and cause us to reduce the average percentage rate or the points and fees on loans that we do make.

The expanding body of federal, state and local regulations and/or the licensing of loan servicing, collections or other aspects of our business and our sales of loans to third parties may increase the cost of compliance and the risks of noncompliance and subject us to litigation.

We service most of our own loans, and loan servicing is subject to extensive regulation by federal, state and local governmental authorities, as well as various laws and judicial and administrative decisions imposing requirements and restrictions on those activities. The volume of new or modified laws and regulations has increased in recent years and, in addition, some individual municipalities have begun to enact laws that restrict loan servicing activities, including delaying or temporarily preventing foreclosures or forcing the modification of certain mortgages. If regulators impose new or more restrictive requirements, we may incur additional significant costs to comply with such requirements, which may further adversely affect us. In addition, were we to be subject to regulatory investigation or regulatory action regarding our loan modification and foreclosure practices, our business, financial condition and earnings could be adversely affected.

39


 

Our failure to comply with applicable laws and regulations could possibly lead to: civil and criminal liability; loss of licensure; damage to our reputation in the industry; fines and penalties and litigation, including class action lawsuits; and administrative enforcement actions. Any of these outcomes could materially and adversely affect us.

The Federal Reserve may require us to commit capital resources to support the Bank.

The Federal Reserve requires a bank holding company to act as a source of financial and managerial strength to its subsidiary banks and to commit resources to support its subsidiary banks. Under the “source of strength” doctrine that was codified by the Dodd-Frank Act, the Federal Reserve may require a bank holding company to make capital injections into a troubled subsidiary bank at times when the bank holding company may not otherwise be inclined to do so and may charge the bank holding company with engaging in unsafe and unsound practices for failure to commit resources to such a subsidiary bank. Under the prompt corrective action regime, if the Bank were to become undercapitalized, we would be required to guarantee the Bank’s plan to restore its capital subject to certain limits. See “Item 1: Business—Supervision and Regulation—Bank Regulation and Supervision—Prompt Corrective Action.” Accordingly, we could be required to provide financial assistance to the Bank if it experiences financial distress.

A capital injection may be required at a time when our resources are limited, and we may be required to borrow the funds or raise capital to make the required capital injection. Any loan by a bank holding company to its subsidiary bank is subordinate in right of payment to deposits and certain other indebtedness of such subsidiary bank. In the event of a bank holding company’s bankruptcy, the bankruptcy trustee will assume any commitment by the holding company to a federal bank regulatory agency to maintain the capital of a subsidiary bank. Moreover, bankruptcy law provides that claims based on any such commitment will be entitled to a priority of payment over the claims of the holding company’s general unsecured creditors, including the holders of any note obligations. Thus, any borrowing by a bank holding company for the purpose of making a capital injection to a subsidiary bank often becomes more difficult and expensive relative to other corporate borrowings.

We could be adversely affected by the soundness of other financial institutions.

Financial services institutions are interrelated as a result of trading, clearing, counterparty or other relationships. We have exposure to many different industries and counterparties, and routinely execute transactions with counterparties in the financial services industry, including commercial banks, brokers and dealers, investment banks and other institutional clients. Many of these transactions expose us to credit risk in the event of a default by a counterparty or client. In addition, our credit risk may be exacerbated when our collateral cannot be foreclosed upon or is liquidated at prices not sufficient to recover the full amount of the credit or derivative exposure due. Any such losses could adversely affect our business, financial condition and earnings.

Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments

None.

Item 2. Properties

Our corporate headquarters is located at 5415 Evergreen Way, Everett, WA 98203. In addition to our corporate headquarters, which includes our Evergreen branch, we operated 13 other branch offices as of December 31, 2018. We own our corporate headquarters and three of our other branch offices and lease the remainder of our branch offices. The leases, excluding renewal periods, on our branch offices expire in 2021 through 2029. We believe that these facilities and additional or alternative space available to us are adequate to meet our needs for the foreseeable future.

Item 3. Legal Proceedings

From time to time we are a party to various litigation matters incidental to the conduct of our business. We do not believe that any currently pending legal proceedings will have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition or earnings.

Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures

Not applicable.

40


 

PART II

 

Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

 

The Company’s common stock, no par value per share, is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “CCB.” On December 31, 2018, there were 439 holders of record of the Company’s common stock.

 

Holders of our common stock are only entitled to receive dividends when, as and if declared by our board of directors out of funds legally available for dividends. We have not historically declared or paid dividends on our common stock and we do not intend to declare or pay dividends on our common stock in the near-term. Instead, we anticipate that all of our future earnings will be retained to support our operations and to finance the growth and development of our business. Any future determination to pay dividends will be made by our board of directors and will depend on a number of factors, including:

 

our historic and projected financial condition, liquidity and results of operations;

 

our capital levels and needs;

 

tax considerations;

 

any acquisitions or potential acquisitions that we may pursue;

 

statutory and regulatory prohibitions and other limitations;

 

the terms of any credit agreements or other borrowing arrangements that restrict our ability to pay cash dividends;

 

general economic conditions; and

 

other factors that our board of directors may deem relevant.

We are not obligated to pay dividends on our common stock and are subject to certain restrictions on paying dividends on our common stock.

As a Washington corporation, we are subject to certain restrictions on distributions to shareholders under the Washington Business Corporation Act. Generally, a Washington corporation is prohibited from making a distribution to shareholders if, after giving effect to the distribution, the corporation would not be able to pay its liabilities as they become due in the usual course of business or the corporation’s total assets would be less than the sum of its total liabilities plus, unless its articles of incorporation provide otherwise, the amount that would be needed, if the corporation were to be dissolved at the time of the distribution, to satisfy the preferential rights upon dissolution of shareholders whose preferential rights are superior to those receiving the distribution. In addition, if required payments on our outstanding junior subordinated debentures are not made or suspended, we may be prohibited from paying dividends on our common stock. We are also subject to certain restrictions on our right to pay dividends on our capital stock in the event we have failed to make any required payment of interest or principal under the terms of our subordinated note.

We are subject to certain restrictions on the payment of cash dividends as a result of banking laws, regulations and policies. Because we are a bank holding company and do not engage directly in business activities of a material nature, our ability to pay dividends on our common stock depends, in large part, upon our receipt of dividends from the Bank, which is also subject to numerous limitations on the payment of dividends under federal and state banking laws, regulations and policies. See “Item 1: Business—Supervision and Regulation—Bank Regulation and Supervision—Payment of Dividends.” The present and future dividend policy of the Bank is subject to the discretion of its board of directors. The Bank is not obligated to pay us dividends.

 

41


 

Stock Performance Graph

 

The following graph provided by SNL Financial compares the cumulative total return of the Company’s common stock with the cumulative total return of the Nasdaq Composite Index and the SNL Bank Index.  The graph assumes $100 was invested on July 18, 2018, the first day of trading of the Company’s common stock.  Cumulative total return assumes reinvestment of all dividends.  The performance graph is being furnished solely to accompany this report pursuant to Item 201(e) of Regulation S-K, and is not being filed for purposes of Section 18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and is not to be incorporated by reference into any filing of the Company, whether made before or after the date hereof, regardless of any general incorporation language in such filing.

 

 

 

 

 

Period Ending

 

 

Index

07/18/18

07/31/18

08/31/18

09/30/18

10/31/18

11/30/18

12/31/18

Coastal Financial Corporation

100.00

99.02

98.90

103.66

99.57

97.26

92.87

NASDAQ Composite Index

100.00

97.69

103.41

102.68

93.27

93.73

84.92

SNL Bank Index

100.00

100.99

102.19

97.71

92.58

95.13

81.52

 

 

 

Purchases of Equity Securities

 

The Company did not purchase any shares of its common stock during the year ended December 31, 2018.

 

Item 6.Selected Financial Data 

 

The following table sets forth selected historical consolidated financial data as of and for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014. The selected balance sheet data as of December 31, 2018 and

42


 

2017, and the selected statement of income data for the years ended December 31, 2018 and 2017, have been derived from our audited consolidated financial statements included elsewhere in this report. The selected balance sheet data as of December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014 and the selected statement of income data for the years ended December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014 have been derived from our audited consolidated financial statements that are not included in this report. Our historical results are not necessarily indicative of any future performance. The information presented in the following table has been adjusted to give effect to a one-for-five reverse stock split of our common shares completed effective May 4, 2018. The effect of the reverse stock split on outstanding shares and per share figures has been retroactively applied to all periods presented.

The selected historical consolidated financial data presented below contains financial measures that are not presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States and have not been audited. See “GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

 

 

 

As of or for the Year Ended

December 31,

 

 

 

2018

 

 

2017

 

 

2016

 

 

2015

 

 

2014

 

 

 

(Dollars in thousands, except per share data)

 

Statement of Income Data:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total interest income

 

$

38,743

 

 

$

32,113

 

 

$

28,460

 

 

$

24,829

 

 

$

22,451

 

Total interest expense

 

 

3,926

 

 

 

2,875

 

 

 

2,523

 

 

 

2,501

 

 

 

2,032

 

Provision for loan losses

 

 

1,826

 

 

 

870

 

 

 

1,919

 

 

 

941

 

 

 

1,690

 

Net interest income after provision for loan losses

 

 

32,991

 

 

 

28,368

 

 

 

24,018

 

 

 

21,387

 

 

 

18,729

 

Total noninterest income

 

 

5,467

 

 

 

4,154

 

 

 

4,977

 

 

 

3,506

 

 

 

3,574

 

Total noninterest expense

 

 

26,216

 

 

 

22,433

 

 

 

21,538

 

 

 

20,406

 

 

 

18,829

 

Provision for income taxes

 

 

2,541

 

 

 

4,653

 

 

 

2,454

 

 

 

1,483

 

 

 

1,127

 

Net income

 

 

9,701

 

 

 

5,436

 

 

 

5,003

 

 

 

3,004

 

 

 

2,347

 

Adjusted net income (1)

 

 

9,701

 

 

 

6,731

 

 

 

5,003

 

 

 

3,004

 

 

 

2,347

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance Sheet Data:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash and due from banks

 

 

125,782

 

 

 

89,751

 

 

 

86,975

 

 

 

84,674

 

 

 

80,167

 

Investment securities

 

 

37,922

 

 

 

38,336

 

 

 

34,994

 

 

 

16,150

 

 

 

13,757

 

Loans

 

 

767,899

 

 

 

656,788

 

 

 

596,128

 

 

 

499,186

 

 

 

431,119

 

Allowance for loan losses

 

 

9,407

 

 

 

8,017

 

 

 

7,544

 

 

 

5,989

 

 

 

5,557

 

Total assets

 

 

952,110

 

 

 

805,753

 

 

 

740,611

 

 

 

622,678

 

 

 

546,475

 

Interest-bearing deposits

 

 

510,089

 

 

 

460,937

 

 

 

424,707

 

 

 

370,028

 

 

 

333,230

 

Noninterest-bearing deposits

 

 

293,525

 

 

 

242,358

 

 

 

223,955

 

 

 

173,554

 

 

 

138,931

 

Total deposits

 

 

803,614

 

 

 

703,295

 

 

 

648,662

 

 

 

543,582

 

 

 

472,161

 

Total borrowings

 

 

33,546

 

 

 

33,529

 

 

 

28,513

 

 

 

20,376

 

 

 

19,374

 

Total shareholders’ equity

 

 

109,156

 

 

 

65,711

 

 

 

59,897

 

 

 

55,753

 

 

 

52,521

 

Share and Per Share Data: (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Earnings per share—basic

 

 

0.93

 

 

 

0.59

 

 

 

0.54

 

 

 

0.33

 

 

 

0.30

 

Earnings per share—diluted

 

 

0.91

 

 

 

0.59

 

 

 

0.54

 

 

 

0.33

 

 

 

0.30

 

Adjusted earnings per share—diluted (3)

 

 

0.91

 

 

 

0.73

 

 

 

0.54

 

 

 

0.33

 

 

 

0.30

 

Dividends per share

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book value per share (4)

 

 

9.18

 

 

 

7.11

 

 

 

6.48

 

 

 

6.04

 

 

 

5.70

 

Tangible book value per share (5)

 

 

9.18

 

 

 

7.11

 

 

 

6.48

 

 

 

6.04

 

 

 

5.70

 

Weighted average common shares outstanding–basic

 

 

10,440,740

 

 

 

9,232,398

 

 

 

9,226,204

 

 

 

9,218,418

 

 

 

7,859,830

 

Weighted average common shares outstanding–diluted

 

 

10,608,764

 

 

 

9,237,629

 

 

 

9,227,216

 

 

 

9,220,836

 

 

 

7,859,830

 

Shares outstanding at end of period

 

 

11,893,203

 

 

 

9,248,901

 

 

 

9,238,788

 

 

 

9,232,538

 

 

 

9,213,204

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Performance Ratios:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Return on average assets

 

 

1.14

%

 

 

0.73

%

 

 

0.76

%

 

 

0.52

%

 

 

0.49

%

Pre-tax, pre-provision ROAA (6)

 

 

1.66

%

 

 

1.46

%

 

 

1.43

%

 

 

0.93

%

 

 

1.08

%

Adjusted return on average assets (7)

 

 

1.14

%

 

 

0.90

%

 

 

0.76

%

 

 

0.52

%

 

 

0.49

%

Return on average shareholders’ equity

 

 

11.40

%

 

 

8.27

%

 

 

8.56

%

 

 

5.52

%

 

 

5.33

%

Adjusted return on average shareholders’ equity (8)

 

 

11.40

%

 

 

10.24

%

 

 

8.56

%

 

 

5.52

%

 

 

5.33

%

Yield on earnings assets

 

 

4.72

%

 

 

4.48

%

 

 

4.53

%

 

 

4.51

%

 

 

4.93

%

Yield on loans

 

 

5.18

%

 

 

4.98

%

 

 

5.16

%

 

 

5.34

%

 

 

5.60

%

Cost of funds

 

 

0.52

%

 

 

0.42

%

 

 

0.42

%

 

 

0.48

%

 

 

0.47

%

Cost of deposits

 

 

0.42

%

 

 

0.32

%

 

 

0.36

%

 

 

0.46

%

 

 

0.44

%

Cost of interest bearing deposits

 

 

0.66

%

 

 

0.50

%

 

 

0.55

%

 

 

0.67

%

 

 

0.63

%

Net interest margin

 

 

4.24

%

 

 

4.08

%

 

 

4.13

%

 

 

4.06

%

 

 

4.49

%

Noninterest expense to average assets

 

 

3.09

%

 

 

3.00

%

 

 

3.28

%

 

 

3.51

%

 

 

3.92

%

Efficiency ratio (9)

 

 

65.08

%

 

 

67.18

%

 

 

69.67

%

 

 

78.99

%

 

 

78.48

%

Loans to deposits

 

 

95.56

%

 

 

93.40

%

 

 

91.90

%

 

 

91.80

%

 

 

91.30

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Credit Quality Ratios:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nonperforming assets to total assets

 

 

0.19

%

 

 

0.26

%

 

 

1.11

%

 

 

1.52

%

 

 

1.90

%

Nonperforming assets to total loans and OREO

 

 

0.24

%

 

 

0.32

%

 

 

1.38

%

 

 

1.89

%

 

 

2.39

%

43


 

Nonperforming loans to total loans

 

 

0.24

%

 

 

0.32

%

 

 

0.27

%

 

 

0.54

%

 

 

0.35

%

Allowance for loan losses to nonperforming loans

 

 

515.17

%

 

 

378.16

%

 

 

468.28

%

 

 

221.32

%

 

 

365.35

%

Allowance for loan losses to total loans

 

 

1.23

%

 

 

1.22

%

 

 

1.27

%

 

 

1.20

%

 

 

1.29

%

Net charge-offs to average loans

 

 

0.06

%

 

 

0.06

%

 

 

0.07

%

 

 

0.11

%

 

 

0.10

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Capital Ratios :

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total shareholders’ equity to total assets

 

 

11.46

%

 

 

8.16

%

 

 

8.09

%

 

 

8.95

%

 

 

9.61

%

Tangible equity to tangible assets (10)

 

 

11.46

%

 

 

8.16

%

 

 

8.09

%

 

 

8.95

%

 

 

9.61

%

Common equity tier 1 capital ratio (11)

 

 

12.84

%

 

 

11.67

%

 

 

11.60

%

 

 

11.14

%

 

N/A

 

Tier 1 leverage ratio (11)

 

 

11.35

%

 

 

9.94

%

 

 

10.11

%

 

 

9.58

%

 

 

10.10

%

Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio (11)

 

 

12.84

%

 

 

11.67

%

 

 

11.60

%

 

 

11.14

%

 

 

12.46

%

Total risk-based capital ratio (11)

 

 

14.05

%

 

 

12.90

%

 

 

12.85

%

 

 

12.31

%

 

 

13.71

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(1)  Adjusted net income is a non-GAAP financial measure that excludes the impact of the revaluation of our deferred tax assets as a result of the reduction in the corporate income tax rate under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in fiscal year 2017. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is net income. See our reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to their most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under the caption “GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

 

(2)  Share and per share amounts are based on total common shares outstanding, which includes common stock and nonvoting common stock.  There was no nonvoting common stock at December 31, 2018.

 

(3)  Adjusted earnings per share is a non-GAAP financial measure that excludes the impact of the revaluation of our deferred tax assets as a result of the reduction in the corporate income tax rate under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in fiscal year 2017. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is earnings per share. See our reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to their most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under the caption “GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

 

(4)  We calculate book value per share as total shareholders’ equity at the end of the relevant period divided by the outstanding number of our common shares, which includes common stock and any nonvoting common stock, at the end of each period.

 

(5)  Tangible book value per share is a non-GAAP financial measure. We calculate tangible book value per share as total shareholders’ equity at the end of the relevant period, less goodwill and other intangible assets, divided by the outstanding number of our common shares, which includes common stock and any nonvoting common stock, at the end of each period. The most directly comparable GAAP financial measure is book value per share. We had no goodwill or other intangible assets as of any of the dates indicated. As a result, tangible book value per share is the same as book value per share as of each of the dates indicated.

 

(6) Pre-tax, pre-provision ROA is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income increased by provision for income tax and provision for loan losses divided by average assets.  The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average assets.

 

(7)  Adjusted return on average assets is a non-GAAP financial measure that excludes the impact of the revaluation of our deferred tax assets as a result of the reduction in the corporate income tax rate under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in fiscal year 2017. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average assets. See our reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to their most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under the caption “GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

 

(8)  Adjusted return on average shareholder’s equity is a non-GAAP financial measure that excludes the impact of the revaluation of our deferred tax assets as a result of the reduction in the corporate income tax rate under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in fiscal year 2017. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average shareholders’ equity. See our reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to their most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under the caption “GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

 

(9)  Efficiency ratio represents noninterest expense divided by the sum of net interest income and noninterest income.

 

(10)   Tangible equity to tangible assets is a non-GAAP financial measure. We calculate tangible equity to tangible assets as total shareholders’ equity at the end of the relevant period, less goodwill and other intangible assets. The most directly comparable GAAP financial measures is total shareholders’ equity to total assets. We had no goodwill or other intangible assets as of the dates indicated. As a result, tangible equity to tangible assets is the same as total shareholders’ equity to total assets as of each of the dates indicated.

 

(11)  Capital ratios are for the Bank.

 

 

 

GAAP Reconciliation and Management Explanation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

 

Some of the financial measures included in this report are not measures of financial performance recognized by GAAP. Our management uses the non-GAAP financial measures set forth below in its analysis of our performance.

 

“Adjusted net income” is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income increased by the additional income tax expense that resulted from the revaluation of deferred tax assets as a result of the reduction in the corporate income tax rate under the recently enacted Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is net income.

 

“Adjusted earnings per share” is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income, plus additional income tax expense, divided by weighted average outstanding shares (diluted). The most directly comparable GAAP measure is earnings per share.

 

“Pre-tax, pre-provision ROAA” is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income increased by provision for income tax and provision for loan losses, divided by average assets.  The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average assets.

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“Adjusted effective tax rate” is a non-GAAP measure defined as provision for income taxes, less additional income tax expense, divided income before provision for income taxes.

 

“Adjusted return on average assets” is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income, plus additional income tax expense, divided by average assets. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average assets.

 

“Adjusted return on average shareholders’ equity” is a non-GAAP measure defined as net income, plus additional income tax expense, divided by average shareholders’ equity. The most directly comparable GAAP measure is return on average shareholders’ equity.

 

We believe that these non-GAAP financial measures provide information that is important to investors and that is useful in understanding our results of operations. However, these non-GAAP financial measures are supplemental and are not a substitute for an analysis based on GAAP measures. As other companies may use different calculations for these measures, this presentation may not be comparable to other similarly titled measures by other companies.

 

(Dollars in thousands, except share and per share data)

 

As of and for the

Year Ended

December 31, 2017

 

Adjusted net income:

 

 

 

 

Net income

 

$

5,436

 

Plus: additional income tax expense

 

 

1,295

 

Adjusted net income

 

$

6,731

 

Adjusted earnings per share—diluted

 

 

 

 

Net income

 

$

5,436

 

Plus: additional income tax expense

 

 

1,295

 

Adjusted net income

 

$

6,731

 

Weighted average common shares outstanding—diluted (1)

 

 

9,237,629

 

Adjusted earnings per share—diluted (1)

 

$

0.73

 

Adjusted effective tax rate

 

 

 

 

Income before provision for income taxes

 

$

10,089

 

Provision for income taxes

 

$

4,653

 

Less: additional income tax expense

 

 

1,295

 

Adjusted provision for income taxes

 

$

3,358

 

Adjusted effective tax rate