First BanCorp (NYSE:FBP) posted positive earnings, as it beat on the top-line, and was in line with EPS estimates. Net income was $21.2 million compared to $17.1 million in Q1 of 2014 and a loss of $122.6 million in the same period a year prior. The results of the quarter were negatively impacted by a $1.4 million net charge for provision losses from mortgages acquired by Doral Financial Corporation (NYSE:DRL), but still met analyst earnings estimates.
During the quarter, total loan originations increased to $781.3 million from $770.6 million last quarter. Nonetheless, provisions for loan and lease losses in the quarter were $26.7 million, a decrease of $5.2 million from the quarter prior. This divergence of elevated loans, while decreasing provisions for loan losses is exceptionally positive, as it points to an improving balance sheet. Moreover, tangible book value increased to $5.72 from $5.48 in the quarter prior and $5.32 in the same period last year.
In my previous article, "First BanCorp: Down 96.4% since 2007, Poised For A Recovery," when it traded at $5.29, I discussed how FBP was positioned to perform well. I cited an improving balance sheet, decreasing loan losses, and a favorable environment as being the catalysts to propel this stock higher.
Disclosure: The author has no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. The author wrote this article themselves, and it expresses their own opinions. The author is not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). The author has no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.