The Washington Trust Co.’s multi-pronged growth strategy is paying off, as the state’s largest community bank registered a 9.1 percent year-over-year net income gain in the second quarter, despite a 6.2 percent decline in total interest and noninterest income.
Earnings totaled $9.8 million in the period ended June 30, compared with $9 million a year earlier, as diluted earnings per share increased to 58 cents from 54 cents in 2013.
“Our continued success is attributable to our commitment to a corporate strategy focused on market expansion, corporate business line growth and maximization of what we consider to be our unique business model, namely our wealth management division,” said Washington Trust Chairman and CEO Joseph J. MarcAurele in a July 22 phone conference to review second-quarter results.
While the wealth management division is not unusual in its operations, it is unique in relationship to the bank’s overall category, he said.
“What’s unique is that for a community bank of our size, we have a very large wealth management business,” MarcAurele told Providence Business News.
The “division achieved a major milestone during the quarter, reaching $5 billion in assets under management for the first time in our company’s history,” MarcAurele said. “This is a high priority business line for us, because it provides a consistent stream of non-interest income. In fact, wealth management revenues represented 23 percent of the company’s total second-quarter revenues.”
The bank’s wealth management assets under administration rose by $577 million, a 13 percent increase over the same 2013 period. As a result, wealth management revenue increased 7.8 percent to $8.5 million.
After a slow start earlier in the year, mortgage banking activity increased in the second quarter as well, and the bank posted solid loan sale gains, MarcAurele said.