Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Ratings Reflect Stronger Positions for State Banks

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Ratings Reflect Stronger Positions for State Banks

Article excerpt

Generally stronger capital positions at Oklahoma's banks are reflected in the higher number of banks receiving the top rating by an independent research firm.

Consolidations and strong earnings in 1992 were significant factors in the improvement seen in the January report of Bauer Financial Reports Inc., of Coral Gables, Fla.

The state had a 6.5 percent increase in the number of banks receiving the firm's five-star rating for the quarter ended in September 1992, compared with the same period a year earlier. The increase from the comparable 1990 period was 33 percent.

Bauer's five-star rating signifies banks with twice the required capital. The 1992 rating was given to 164 banks, or 41 percent of the 399 banks in the state.

A year earlier, the firm had given the five-star rating to 154 banks, or 37 percent of the 414 banks in the state. In 1990, it gave the rating to 123 of the state's 421 banks.

Bauer gave its next highest rating of four stars to 162 banks, or 40.6 percent of the banks in the state at the end of September 1992. That rating indicates significantly more capital than required by regulators.

Bauer had assigned four-star ratings to 153 banks, or 36.96 percent, of the industry in 1991, and to 192, or 45.6 percent, of the industry in 1990.

Banks with both ratings are included on Bauer's list of recommended banks.

Bauer's most recent report reflects 81.6 percent of the industry with capital well above regulatory minimums. This compared with 74 percent a year earlier and 78 percent in 1990.

Improvement also was seen in the number of banks at the bottom rung of Bauer's third quarter ratings. Only four banks in the state, or 1 percent of the total, received no stars. In 1991, 12 banks, or 2.9 percent of the total, got no stars.

Of the 12 banks on the 1991 list, only four remained on the 1992 list. Two banks failed, two merged with other institutions, and four banks showed enough improvement during the 12 months to move into higher categories.

Citizens Bank of Tulsa showed the greatest improvement, moving from no stars in 1991 to three and a half stars in 1992. The Bank of Healdton and Chickasha Bank and Trust Co. both moved from no stars in September 1991 to three stars in 1992. Southwestern Bank

Trust Co. of Oklahoma City moved one notch to Bauer's one-star rating.

Eleven banks in the Oklahoma City area were among the 164 which received the five-star rating.

The three Oklahoma City banks that received the top rating were: Bankers Bank, Northwest Bank and Will Rogers Bank Trust Co.

Area banks with the highest rating were: Farmers Merchants Bank in Piedmont, First National Bank of Bethany, First National Bank of Midwest City, First National Bank of Tuttle, First State Bank of Harrah, First State Bank of Jones, Park State Bank of Nicoma Park and Sooner State Bank of Tuttle. …

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