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Two LI banks report lower earnings

Second-quarter earnings fell for New York Community Bancorp,

Second-quarter earnings fell for New York Community Bancorp, based in Westbury, and Suffolk Bancorp, based in Riverhead. Credit: iStock

Two Long Island-based banks reported lower second- quarter earnings Wednesday.

New York Community Bancorp cited a decline in new residential loans because of higher interest rates, while Suffolk Bancorp cited a onetime gain last year and lower net interest income.

New York Community, whose 274 branches in five states make it the largest bank based on the Island, said net income fell 6 percent in the three months ended June 30 from a year earlier, to $122.5 million, or 28 cents a share.

Westbury-based NYCB said noninterest income fell due to a reduction in mortgage banking income. It blamed that reduction on a "decline in residential mortgage loan production, as the rise in mortgage interest rates from the lows of the past four quarters inhibited refinancing activity."

New York Community cited a small year-over-year improvement in net interest income, the difference between the revenue generated from a bank's assets and the expenses associated with liabilities.

But it said 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, fell by 15 basis points from a year earlier, to 3.15 percent. NYCB had total assets of $44.2 billion at June 30.

Riverhead-based Suffolk Bancorp, parent of the 30- branch Suffolk County National Bank, said net income for the second quarter was $2.8 million, or 24 cents a share, down 33 percent and 44 percent, respectively from a year earlier. The year-earlier result reflected a $2.4-million credit to its provision for loan losses, in essence a recovery of some of the provision it had set aside in previous quarters.

Suffolk Bancorp said it would close two branches -- in Water Mill and Middle Island -- to save about $800,000 annually. The closings will occur later this year.

Total assets were $1.65 billion.

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