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Simmons Bank's quarterly profits drop

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Pine Bluff, Arkansas-based Simmons First National Corp. (Nasdaq: SFNC) reported a decrease in first quarter profits as the coronavirus pandemic continued to impact the company.

The operator of four Simmons Bank branches in Springfield posted net income of $67.4 million, or 62 cents per diluted share, a 12.7% drop from $77.2 million, or 68 cents per diluted share, in the same quarter last year, according to a news release.

"We are still feeling the effects of COVID in the economy," Simmons Chairperson and CEO George Makris Jr. said in the release. "Loan demand has been well below historical levels, but we are encouraged by the rebuilding of the pipeline during the first quarter.

"Based on our current levels of capital and liquidity, we have lending capacity that we have not seen in several years, so Simmons is poised to do our part as the economy continues to return to normal.”

Simmons’ first quarter highlights included:
• total interest income that dipped to $169.4 million from $209.2 million a year earlier;
• a provision for credit losses of $1.5 million, down from roughly $23 million in first quarter 2020; and
• salaries and employee benefits that were down 11% to $60.3 million.

As of March 31, Simmons Bank's assets were $23.3 billion and deposits were $18.2 billion, according to the release.

SFNC shares were trading at $29.25 as of 11:03 a.m., compared with a 52-week range of $13.75 to $33.43 per share.

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