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Guaranty Bank approves and funds 226 PPP loans in the first quarter.
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Guaranty Bank approves and funds 226 PPP loans in the first quarter.

Guaranty's quarterly earnings rise

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Guaranty Federal Bancshares Inc. (Nasdaq: GFED) officials say the first quarter shows signs of a rebound from a year slowed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The company, which operates Guaranty Bank, produced $2.2 million in first quarter profits, a 5.3% increase from a year earlier, according to a news release. Diluted share earnings rose to 51 cents from 49 cents per share in first quarter 2020. Guaranty ended the year down roughly 25% in both net income and earnings per share.

“Green shoots are beginning to appear as we cautiously emerge from the impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past year," Guaranty President and CEO Shaun Burke said in the release. "Restrictions are being lifted on businesses, which is leading to a strong rebound in economic growth, and vaccine availability is increasing weekly, which has helped curb the number of infections.

"A very fiscally accommodative government that has shown a willingness to maintain low interest rates while providing stimulus in many forms are examples of why optimism is much higher than this time last year."

During the first quarter, Guaranty's highlights included:
• approval and funding for 226 Payroll Protection Program loans totaling $14.1 million;
• the declaration of the company's 28th consecutive quarterly dividend; and
• a 10.5% increase in salaries and employee benefits to $4.4 million.

Guaranty's assets were $1.3 billion and deposits were $1 billion as of March 31, according to the release. The company has 16 full-service branches in Greene, Christian, Jasper and Newton counties, as well as a loan production office in Webster County.

GFED shares were trading at $24.01 as of 10:54 a.m., compared with a 52-week range of $13.35 to $26.99 per share.

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