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Suffolk Bancorp earnings surge 37 percent

Suffolk Bancorp is the Riverhead-based parent of the

Suffolk Bancorp is the Riverhead-based parent of the Suffolk County National Bank. This branch is in Riverhead on May 12, 2011. Photo Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

Suffolk Bancorp Wednesday became the latest local bank to report higher net income for the year's first three months.

The corporate parent of the 25-branch, Riverhead-based Suffolk County National Bank said higher net interest income and lower operating expenses resulted in a 37 percent year over year increase in first quarter net income.

In recent weeks the parent companies of Astoria Federal Savings and Loan Association of Lake Success, Community National Bank of Melville, Empire National Bank of Islandia, and Gold Coast Bank of Islandia all reported strong year-over-year gains in net income, each citing higher interest income, lower operating costs or both.

Suffolk also said Wednesday that its net interest margin, a measure of the difference between the interest a bank earns on its assets such as loans and the interest it pays out to depositors, was 4.21 percent in the quarter, up from 3.95 percent a year earlier.

Net income for the three months ended March 31 totaled $3.7 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with $2.7 million, or 23 cents a year ago.

Partially offsetting the higher net interest income and lower operating expenses were an increase in the provision for loan losses, a reduction in noninterest income and an increase in taxes.

Suffolk said loans outstanding at March 31, 2014, were up by 37 percent from a year earlier, at $1.13 billion.

Total assets were $1.7 billion at March 31, up 7.6 percent from a year earlier.

Suffolk closed its Water Mill and Middle Island branches last year and four other branches in February: Mattituck, Port Jefferson Station, Manorville and Montauk Harbor.

It opened a branch in Garden City in December.

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