United Way and the Campaign for Working Families Kick Off Tax Season

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 1, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey (UWGPSNJ) and the Campaign for Working Families (CWF) kicked off the 2016 tax season and the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) by opening nearly 40 free tax preparation sites across the region.

“At United Way, we’re focused on ensuring our local families have access to the resources, assets and education they need to thrive,” said Jim Cawley, president and CEO of UWGPSNJ. “Through programs like VITA, we help put additional dollars back into the pockets of our families living paycheck-to-paycheck, so they are able to pay down debt, save for a home or continue their education. Thanks to our Impact Partners like the Campaign for Working Families, we’re changing lives and strengthening communities – one child, one adult and one family at a time.”

To celebrate the 42nd anniversary of the enactment of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and recent legislation that made the federal EITC permanent, eligible community members are invited to file their taxes for free at nearly 40 tax sites in Philadelphia, Montgomery and Delaware Counties and southern New Jersey.

According to the IRS, taxpayers are often unaware of the important credits they may be eligible for and leave valuable dollars on the table. The IRS estimates that one in five taxpayers does not claim one of the biggest boosters to family incomes – the EITC, a refundable credit that can return up to $6,269 per qualifying family – simply because they are unaware that they are eligible or do not file their taxes. VITA not only provides assistance for taxes, but also helps residents make connections to other financial resources such as budgeting, credit counseling and financial literacy programs.

“Our goal is to ensure every eligible taxpayer has access to free and accurate tax preparation services, where the tax filer can be assured they receive all eligible credits they are entitled to in an effort to maximize their refund,” says Mary Arthur, executive director of CWF. “We are honored to have the opportunity to continue this work thanks to the significant support and contributions from United Way’s Impact Fund.”

Families earning $54,000 or less, or individuals earning $20,000 or less, will be eligible to receive free tax assistance. Last year, VITA volunteers filed nearly 29,000 tax returns across the region, which returned more $41 million to local communities. For eligibility requirements and a list of VITA tax sites, please visit UnitedForImpact.org/VITA or CWFPhilly.org.

 

SOURCE United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey

RELATED LINKS
http://www.UnitedForImpact.org

Acorns Resolves to Help Millennials Gain Financial Confidence, Improve Finances, With Launch of Personal Finance Site, Grow

IRVINE, Calif., Jan. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ – Less than one-third of millennials are “very confident” managing their finances and nearly half say they’re treading water financially, or worse, according to a new poll conducted on behalf of Acorns.

Acorns, the fastest-growing investment app with more than 1.3 million users, aims to empower millennials with the knowledge and confidence to take control of and improve their finances in the new year with the launch of the new personal finance site, Grow.  

Grow Equips Millennials to Own Their Financial Future

Grow, a digital magazine that informs and educates millennials who want to be financially successful, is led by award-winning financial journalist and author Jennifer Barrett. The site features original content that helps millennials navigate the small, everyday decisions that can have a big impact on their finances over time.

Every Wednesday, subscribers will receive a newsletter filled with exclusive stories that break down complex financial topics into actionable advice, along with videos, tools, and interviews with money superstars from investor Ashton Kutcher to Vanguard founder John Bogle.

“It’s no surprise that most millennials aren’t very confident managing their money—few of them have been given the knowledge and tools to be financially successful,” said Barrett, vice president of editorial and founding editor of Grow. “Grow is working to close that financial literacy gap by addressing the questions many people have, but don’t know how to answer, and delivering advice in a compelling, digestible format. No finance degree required.”

Explore Grow at grow.acorns.com and read startup investor Ashton’s Kutcher’s advice on what makes a good investment, plus the scariest financial decision he ever made.  You can also find step-by-step instructions on how to build a better budget, pay off your credit card debt faster and successfully negotiate a raise this year, plus stories on a range of other money topics. Sign up to get the weekly newsletter here: https://www.acorns.com/grow/sign-up/.

* SurveyMonkey polled a nationally representative sample of 1,020 millennials about their financial health and goals in a December 2015 survey conducted on behalf of Acorns.

About Acorns
Acorns is the fastest growing savings and investment app. It allows people to round up their daily purchases and automatically Invest the Change® into a commission-free diversified portfolio of index funds offered by the world’s top asset managers (Vanguard, Blackrock and PIMCO). Founded in Newport Beach, California by father and son team Jeff and Walter Cruttenden, Acorns provides a simple entry-point for anyone to get started using the Acorns app on iPhone or Android. The app and financial engine were built with natural human behavior in mind to help inspire realistic investment strategies that can be held for the long term.  Customers accumulate fractional shares and automatically save and invest into a portfolio constructed by world-renowned Nobel Laureate economist Dr. Harry Markowitz. Acorns’ smart portfolio algorithms automatically work behind the scenes, helping people build wealth naturally, pennies at a time. From Acorns mighty oaks do grow. 

About Grow
Grow is a digital magazine that informs and educates millennials who want to be financially successful. Published by Acorns, the fastest-growing investment app, and led by award-winning financial journalist and author Jennifer Barrett, Grow features exclusive stories that break down complex financial topics into actionable advice, along with videos, tools and interviews with money superstars from investor Ashton Kutcher to Vanguard founder John Bogle. Weekly newsletter sign up is available at grow.acorns.com.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151216/296626LOGO

SOURCE Acorns

Related Links

https://www.acorns.com

New Home Equity Loan Product Solves Homeowners’ Needs

IRVINE, Calif., Jan. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Seven years after home values collapsed, nine out of ten homeowners today now have positive equity,1 with many accessing their newly gained liquidity to address important needs such as home improvements, debt consolidation, education, business loans and more, according to loanDepot, America’s lender.

With home price appreciation on the rise in many housing markets across the country, home equity loans nationwide increased 4.2 percent in the third quarter 2015.2 Home prices are expected to moderate slightly in 2016, rising between 4.3 percent3 and 4.9 percent.4 An additional 5 percent in price appreciation will be enough to move another 800,000 homeowners into positive equity positions and raise the total number of homeowners with equity to 47.3 million.5

“In the last three years median home prices have increased by more than 15 percent6 and nearly 7 percent in last 12 months7 alone, helping millions of homeowners restore equity lost during the housing crisis,” said Anthony Hsieh, chairman and CEO, loanDepot. “Based on current market trends, we expect more residential properties will continue moving into positive equity positions. This will help open up low cost liquidity to millions of newly equitized homeowners, particularly those reluctant to abandon their low fixed-rate first liens.”

Introduced nationwide in September 2015, fundings of loanDepot home equity loan products have nearly doubled every month since launch, with average loan amounts on the rise ranging from approximately $40,000 to nearly $60,000. loanDepot is the first marketplace lender to offer home equity loan products to borrowers across the country, and the only marketplace lender to offer unsecured personal, home purchase, refinance, and home equity loan programs.

“A significant challenge for many homeowners today is that they don’t know if their home has regained equity, and they’re unclear on how to determine the value of their home,” said Hsieh. “As more homeowners become aware of their improved equity positions, our data shows they’ll use their recently gained equity for debt consolidation, home improvement, education, or small business needs, among other uses.”

loanDepot home equity loans enable homeowners to access equity in loan amounts ranging from $25,000 to $250,000. Fixed terms are offered up to 30 years with up to 95 percent loan-to-value available for certain borrowers. Since a home equity loan is a secured debt, the interest rate is typically lower than the average rate changed on a credit card or other form of unsecured debt. Home equity loans also offer potential tax savings as interest payments may be tax deductible. There are no pre-payment penalties so borrowers can pay off principal anytime.

In addition to debt consolidation, many loanDepot home equity borrowers are putting their equity to work to meet major needs for home improvements. The Harvard Joint Center for housing Studies projects annual spending growth for home improvements will accelerate from 2.4 percent between the third-quarter of 2015 to 6.8% in the second quarter of 2016.8

Homeowners considering a home equity loan can easily receive information on how to obtain an estimate of their home’s current value by talking to a licensed loanDepot loan officer. For more information, call 888-983-3240 or go to http://www.loandepot.com/HomeEquity

ABOUT LOANDEPOT, LLC 
loanDepot, America’s lender, matches borrowers through technology and high-touch customer care with the credit they need to fuel their lives. As a fast-growing national marketplace lender, the loanDepot platform is disrupting finance by dissolving the lines between mortgage and nonmortgage credit. The company has funded nearly $60 billion in loans since inception.  loanDepot is passionate about emerging financial technology and dynamic product delivery supported by excellent customer service to empower consumers. Headquartered in Southern California, loanDepot employs 5,000+ people across the country including 1,500+ licensed loan officers, and operates 140+ loan stores nationwide. The company operates under the brand names loanDepot, imortgage, Mortgage Master, LDWholesale and LDEscrow. NMLS # 174457Learn more at loanDepot.com

1  http://www.corelogic.com/about-us/news/corelogic-reports-256,000-us-properties-regained-equity-in-the-third-quarter-of-2015.aspx
2http://www.insidemortgagefinance.com/issues/imfpubs_imf/2015_48/latest_data/Home-Equity-Lending-Up-Slightly-in-3Q15–1000034855-1.html
3http://www.freddiemac.com/finance/pdf/nov_2015_public_outlook.pdf
4 http://fanniemae.com/resources/file/research/emma/pdf/Housing_Forecast_121515.pdf
5http://www.corelogic.com/about-us/researchtrends/homeowner-equity-report.aspx#.VnmDIL3RscM
6 CoreLogic – 2013, 2014 and 2015 HPI price reports – http://www.corelogic.com/research/hpi/corelogic_hpi_october_2015.pdf
http://www.corelogic.com/about-us/news/corelogic-reports-homes-prices-rose-by-5.7-percent-year-over-year-in-january-2015.aspx
http://www.corelogic.com/about-us/news/corelogic-home-price-index-rises-by-almost-10-percent-year-over-year-in-january.aspx
7http://www.corelogic.com/research/hpi/corelogic_hpi_october_2015.pdf
8http://www.jchs.harvard.edu/remodeling-spending-expected-accelerate-2016

Contact:
Julie Reynolds | loanDepot
949.899.0749 | JReynolds@loanDepot.com
Brittney Jennings | Ogilvy Public Relations
312.397.6061 | Brittney.Jennings@ogilvy.com

Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160105/319503

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120829/SF64465LOGO

 

SOURCE loanDepot, LLC

RELATED LINKS
http://www.loandepot.com

New Financing Company Provides Innovative Funding Programs for Healthcare Industry

DALLAS, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Surgical Funds (www.surgicalfunds.com), a firm formed to facilitate creative financing solutions solely for the healthcare industry, has launched and is changing the way healthcare organizations and professionals access cost-effective capital. Surgical Funds, created by trusted, veteran leaders in the healthcare industry, is dedicated to facilitating the highest quality medical financing alternatives for healthcare business owners and professionals, including group practices, ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), clinical labs, and individual physicians.

By partnering with leading lending institutions, Surgical Funds delivers fast, customized solutions designed to meet the challenges unique to the healthcare industry. Medical financing programs are available for commercial debt consolidation, capital expansion, projects, startup expenses, and more. Surgical Funds’ lending partners, which includes Bankers Healthcare Group, have provided millions of dollars in customized financing programs nationwide.

The firm was founded by two executives with extensive experience in the healthcare, insurance, and financial services industries: Jeff Blankinship, an ASC industry leader who is president and CEO of healthcare IT solutions firm Surgical Notes and co-founder of  Surgical Captive, and the founder of the Surgery Center Network and Randy Bishop, another ASC industry leader who is chief operating officer of Surgical Notes, co-founder of Surgical Captive, and a partner at VisionCap Investments.

“Accessing a line of credit can be a difficult and time-consuming process for healthcare organizations and professionals,” Blankinship said. “Surgical Funds is designed to offer healthcare businesses and professionals an easy way to access an array of medical financing programs with limited funding requirements. By taking advantage of one of the exclusive financing programs through Surgical Funds, providers will be free to focus on what matters most — growing their business and delivering high-quality care to patients.”

To learn more about Surgical Funds and take the first step toward accessing the capital you need, visit www.surgicalfunds.com.

About Surgical Funds
Surgical Funds, created by trusted leaders in the healthcare industry, was formed to facilitate creative financing solutions solely for the healthcare industry. With our partners, we strive to offer fast, hassle-free funding programs designed to meet the unique and changing needs of healthcare professionals and business owners. Medical financing programs are available for commercial debt consolidation, capital expansion, projects, start-up expenses, and more. Surgical Funds’ lending partners are of the highest caliber and have provided millions of dollars in customized financing programs nationwide. Contact us today to learn how Surgical Funds can provide you with the capital you need by visiting www.surgicalfunds.com.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151019/278365LOGO

 

SOURCE Surgical Funds

RELATED LINKS
http://www.surgicalfunds.com

What has consumers stressed this holiday season?

COSTA MESA, Calif., Nov. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Consumers may not feel so jolly once they head into this year’s holiday shopping season. According to a national survey by Experian, many respondents are concerned about the financial stress of gift buying and adding debt, as well as becoming an identity theft victim.

When it comes to their finances, a majority of survey respondents believe holiday shopping is a strain (60 percent), and almost half feel obligated to spend more than they can afford (41 percent). When asked how they feel about holiday shopping, 29 percent of respondents feel stressed and 21 percent feel overwhelmed. According to respondents, there are several reasons for the seasonal anxiety: It is difficult to stay within budget (38 percent), there is no extra money to buy gifts (35 percent), and 26 percent do not want more credit card debt.

Credit is the key for many consumers’ merry holiday, allowing them to get the gifts they desire. Respondents plan to spend an average of $806 for gifts. Forty-nine percent of surveyed consumers plan to use credit for almost a quarter of their expenditures; in fact, 12 percent of respondents plan to open a new credit card for holiday shopping. Unfortunately, missing payments or opening new cards can damage a consumer’s credit profile – ten percent of respondents say holiday shopping has negatively affected their credit scores.

“The holidays can prove to be a challenging time for many consumers trying to manage their finances,” said Rod Griffin, director of Public Education at Experian. “Credit is a useful tool if it is used wisely, but it’s best to create a budget and determine how much one can afford using credit so there are not overwhelming bills to pay in the New Year.”

Some respondents have taken that insight to heart, based on these credit-related New Year’s resolutions: pay off a credit card (28 percent), pay the full credit card balance each month (25 percent) and pay credit card debt on time (21 percent). Fourteen percent plan to check both their credit report and their credit score more often.

Identity theft is no gift
Identity theft and fraud can also damage a credit report and score. Fifty percent of respondents are concerned about identity theft during this holiday shopping season — almost 60 percent among those concerned are millennials, who have grown up in an age of digital crime.

Consumers surveyed feel the risk is both present while shopping at “brick and mortar” retail locations or online with 55 percent choosing both as equally vulnerable. While 30 percent of respondents cite online shopping as riskier (30 percent), almost half still plan to shop online.

“Consumers understand more than ever before that their identities are at risk no matter how or where they shop,” said Michael Bruemmer, vice president of Experian Consumer Protection. “It’s important that they take steps to protect their information and check financial accounts more frequently during the holiday season so they can catch possible fraud quickly.”

Will consumers be naughty or nice with their spending?

  • Unfortunately, 9 percent of respondents plan to pay off their credit card charges late
  • Only 43 percent of respondents plan to have a budget this year
  • However, more than half of respondents have saved 52 percent of their total shopping budget
  • Almost a quarter of surveyed consumers will use reward points to buy gifts (22 percent)

Consumers will use a mix of payment approaches

  • A majority of respondents will pay cash to purchase gifts (53 percent)
  • Almost half of surveyed consumers will use a major credit card (49 percent)
  • Eighteen percent of respondents will use a store credit card

What precautions will consumers take to protect their identities?

  • Fifty-four percent of respondents anticipate shopping only on personal internet connections or networks
  • Fifty-two percent of respondents will check to see if the site is secure
  • Fifty-one percent of respondents log out of personal accounts after shopping.
  • Forty-eight percent of surveyed consumers will go to websites directly instead of clicking on links

About the survey
The online survey was conducted by Edelman Berland on behalf of Experian from Oct. 28 to Nov. 3, 2015, among 1,035 adults ages 18 and older residing in the United States. This online survey is not based on a probability sample; therefore, no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact ann@pitchpublicrelations.com.

About Experian Consumer Services
The Experian Consumer Services division provides credit monitoring and other informational products, such as identity protection, to millions of consumers via the Internet. The organization enables consumers to monitor their credit reports online, check their FICO® scores and protect against identity theft. Its products include Experian Credit TrackerSM and ProtectMyID®.

Experian Consumer Services has established integrated, cobranded relationships with leading online financial destinations that provide consumers with a broad range of comprehensive online financial products and information essential to managing one’s financial life. For more information, visit http://www.experian.com.

About Experian
We are the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to our clients around the world. We help businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making.

We also help people to check their credit report and credit score, and protect against identity theft. In 2015, we were named by Forbes magazine as one of the “World’s Most Innovative Companies.”

We employ approximately 17,000 people in 38 countries and our corporate headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.

Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2015, was US$4.8 billion.

To find out more about our company, please visit http://www.experianplc.com or watch our documentary, “Inside Experian.”

Experian and the Experian marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130131/LA51658LOGO

 

SOURCE Experian

RELATED LINKS
http://www.experian.com

Acquisition of Securities of Cerro Grande Mining Corporation

TORONTO, Nov. 13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Mario Hernandez, c/o Spier Business Corp., 380 Los Carreras, Of, 425, La Serena, Chile, announces that pursuant to a debt settlement transaction (the “Transaction“), he has acquired beneficial ownership and control of 45,101,300 common shares (each, a “Common Share“) in the capital of Cerro Grande Mining Corporation (the “Company“), through Spier Business Corp. (the “Offeror“), a company controlled by Mr. Hernandez.

Pursuant to the Transaction, the Company issued 45,101,300 Common Shares to the Offeror in full and final settlement of outstanding indebtedness in the aggregate amount of US$1,682,885 (CDN$2,255,066) owed by the Company to the Offeror (the “Debt“), such indebtedness being made up ofcash advances made to the Company by Offeror. All amounts have been converted at an exchange ratio of US$1.00 to CDN$1.34.

Prior to the issuance of the Common Shares to the Offeror in connection with the Transaction, Mr. Hernandez beneficially owned and/or exercised control or direction over 54,992,201 Common Shares, representing approximately 31.39% of the issued and outstanding Common Shares on an undiluted basis. Mr. Hernandez also beneficially owns and/or exercises control or direction over 11,245,000 warrants (each, a “Warrant“) expiring October 24, 2019, each Warrant entitling the holder to purchase one Common Share at an exercise price of $0.07, and a convertible debenture in the principal amount of $80,105 (the “Debenture“) convertible into Common Shares at a price of $0.10 per Common Share, representing approximately 6.44% of the issued and outstanding Common Shares on an partially diluted basis giving effect to the exercise of the Warrants and the conversion of the principal amount of the Debenture.

After the issuance of the Common Shares under the Transaction, Mr. Hernandez beneficially owned and/or exercised control or direction over 100,023,501 issued and outstanding Common Shares, representing approximately 37.34% of the issued and outstanding Common Shares on a non‑diluted basis. Assuming conversion of the principal amount of the Debenture and exercise of the Warrants, Mr. Hernandez would beneficially own and/or exercise control or direction over 40.04% of the Common Shares on a partially diluted basis giving effect to the exercise of the Warrants and the conversion of the Debenture.

The Common Shares were issued to the Offeror pursuant to the Transaction, which was a private debt settlement transaction that occurred outside of any market or other facility, in settlement of the Debt, representing an issue price of CDN$0.05 per share.

The Offeror acquired the Common Shares pursuant to the Transaction in settlement of the Debt, to provide an immediate source of cash to the Company and to provide financial relief to the Company in a time of financial hardship. The Offeror intends to hold such Common Shares for investment purposes and may, in the future, increase or decrease its ownership of securities of the Company, directly or indirectly, from time to time depending upon the business and prospects of the Company and future market conditions.

The Offeror is relying on section 2.24 of National Instrument 45-106 — Prospectus Exemptions.

An early warning report (the “EWR“) will be filed on SEDAR and will be available for review at www.sedar.com under the Company’s profile. A copy of the EWR can be obtained from the contact below.

SOURCE Mario Hernandez, c/o Spier Business Corp.

LendingTree Announces Commencement of Common Stock Offering

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Nov. 2, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – LendingTree, Inc. (NASDAQ: TREE) (the “Company”), a leading online loan marketplace, announced today that it has commenced, subject to market and other conditions, an underwritten public offering of 850,000 shares of its common stock pursuant to an effective shelf registration statement previously filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  The Company proposes to issue and sell 725,000 shares of its common stock and a selling stockholder proposes to offer and sell 125,000 shares in the underwritten public offering.  In connection with the offering, the Company expects to grant the underwriters an option for a period of 30 days to purchase up to an additional 127,500 shares of common stock.

The Company expects to use the net proceeds from the offering for general corporate purposes, including, but not limited to, working capital and potential acquisitions. The Company will receive no proceeds from the offer and sale of shares by the selling stockholder.

BofA Merrill Lynch, RBC Capital Markets, LLC and SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc. will serve as joint book-running managers for the offering.  Guggenheim Securities, Needham & Company and Stephens Inc. are acting as co-managers for the offering.

This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy the securities, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction. 

The offering is being made only by means of a prospectus and related prospectus supplement. Copies of the prospectus and the related preliminary prospectus supplement may be obtained free of charge from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s website at www.sec.gov or by contacting any of the joint book-running managers, including:  BofA Merrill Lynch, 222 Broadway, New York, NY 10038, attention:  Prospectus Department, or e-mail dg.prospectus_requests@baml.com; RBC Capital Markets, Attn: Equity Syndicate, 200 Vesey Street, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10281 or by telephone at 877-822-4089 or by email at equityprospectus@rbccm.com; or SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc., Attn: Prospectus Department, 3333 Peachtree Rd., NE, Atlanta, GA 30326 or by telephone at 404-926-5744 or by e-mail at STRH.Prospectus@SunTrust.com.

Safe Harbor Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

The matters contained in the discussion above may be considered to be “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Those statements include statements regarding the intent, belief or current expectations or anticipations of the Company and members of its management team. Factors currently known to management that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include the following: adverse conditions in the United States or global capital markets; adverse conditions in the primary and secondary mortgage markets and in the economy, particularly interest rates; willingness of lenders to make unsecured personal loans and purchase leads for such products from the Company; seasonality of results; potential liabilities to secondary market purchasers; changes in the Company’s relationships with network lenders; breaches of network security or the misappropriation or misuse of personal consumer information; failure to provide competitive service; failure to maintain brand recognition; ability to attract and retain customers in a cost-effective manner; ability to develop new products and services and enhance existing ones; competition; allegations of failure to comply with existing or changing laws, rules or regulations, or to obtain and maintain required licenses; failure of network lenders or other affiliated parties to comply with regulatory requirements; failure to maintain the integrity of systems and infrastructure; liabilities as a result of privacy regulations; failure to adequately protect intellectual property rights or allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights; and changes in management.  These and additional factors to be considered are set forth under “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the period ended December 31, 2014, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the periods ended June 30, 2015 and September 30, 2015  and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect changed assumptions, the occurrence of unanticipated events or changes to future operating results or expectations.

About LendingTree, Inc.

LendingTree, Inc. operates a leading online loan marketplace and provides consumers with an array of online tools and information to help them find the best loans for their needs. The Company’s online marketplace connects consumers with multiple lenders that compete for their business, empowering consumers as they comparison-shop across a full suite of loans and credit-based offerings. The Company provides access to lenders offering home loans, home equity loans/lines of credit, reverse mortgages, personal loans, auto loans, small business loans, credit cards, student loans and more.

LendingTree, Inc. is headquartered in Charlotte, NC and maintains operations solely in the United States.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110518/MM04455LOGO

SOURCE LendingTree, Inc.

Ally Financial Reports Third Quarter 2015 Financial Results

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Oct. 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Ally Financial Inc. (NYSE: ALLY) today reported net income of $268 million. This compares to net income of $182 million in the prior quarter and $423 million for the third quarter of 2014, which included $130 million in income from discontinued operations. The company reported core pre-tax income of $431 million, excluding repositioning items, in the third quarter of 2015, compared to $435 million in the prior quarter and $467 million in the comparable prior year period. Adjusted earnings per diluted common share for the quarter were $0.51, compared to $0.46 in the previous quarter and $0.53 in the prior year period. Ally reported generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) earnings of $0.47 per common share in the third quarter of 2015.

Improved net financing revenue, excluding original issue discount (OID), continued to drive strong results and totaled $981 million in the third quarter of 2015, up from $936 million a year ago. Revenue from retail auto loan growth more than offset a decline in net lease revenue. Further, Ally continued to reduce its cost of funds, resulting in a quarter-over-quarter 9 basis point increase to net interest margin (NIM), excluding OID, and ended the quarter at 2.67 percent. Credit performance during the quarter was in line with expectations with strong retail auto loan growth primarily driving $211 million of provision expense for the quarter, up from $102 million in the third quarter of 2014. Non-interest expenses declined by $68 million, or 9 percent year-over-year, resulting from continued expense reduction efforts and lower weather-related losses in the insurance operations. The adjusted efficiency ratio improved to 44 percent for the quarter, from 46 percent in the prior quarter and 49 percent in the prior year period.

Consumer auto originations remained robust at $11.1 billion for the quarter, increasing from $10.8 billion last quarter and down from $11.8 billion in the same period last year, with the company on track to exceed its originations target in the high $30 billions for 2015. Gains in the Growth2 and Chrysler channels continued to drive consumer auto originations, and excluding GM lease and subvented, originations increased 36 percent year-over-year. Separate from originations, during the quarter the company also completed a previously announced purchase of $607 million of consumer loans and leases from Mitsubishi Motors Credit of America.

“Ally’s third quarter results demonstrate the ongoing strength of the operations and continued progress on our goals to diversify the business, achieve our financial targets and build upon our leading digital platform,” said Ally Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Brown. ”Auto originations were strong at $11.1 billion for the quarter and $31.7 billion year-to-date, and we remain on track to surpass our target for the year, despite the shifts in the business. The business is well-positioned in the marketplace, increasingly more diversified and poised to provide consistent returns.”

Brown continued, “Driving greater efficiencies in our capital and funding structure also remains a priority, and our efforts include deposit growth and funding more assets at the bank. In the third quarter, Ally posted retail deposit growth of $1.8 billion quarter-over-quarter and funded 76 percent of its auto originations through Ally Bank. Addressing the remaining Series G securities continues to be a key area of focus in the near term, as well. By concentrating on these legacy capital instruments in the coming months, Ally will be positioned to have a more normalized capital structure to clear the path for more traditional opportunities to return excess capital to shareholders.”

“Building on our strengths in digital financial services, Ally recently crossed two key milestones – we surpassed one million retail deposit customers in September, and we sold our five millionth vehicle on our online auto remarketing platform in October. The continued growth of these platforms is a testament to our capabilities in delivering compelling products online and via mobile applications that resonate with customers.”

“As we look ahead, our opportunities lie in our inherent strengths – a strong culture of agility and innovation, a proven track-record in digital financial services, a respected customer-centric brand, and a foundation of 5.5 million customers. We have taken initial steps in deepening our customer relationships and expect to expand our customer offerings in the year ahead,” he concluded.

Results by Segment

($ millions)







Increase/(Decrease)
vs.


3Q 15

2Q 15

3Q 14


2Q 15

3Q 14

Automotive Finance

$347

$401

$415


$(54)

$(68)

Insurance

40

15

60


25

(20)

Dealer Financial Services

$387

$416

$475


$(29)

$(88)

Mortgage

7

9

(3)


(2)

10

Corporate and Other (ex. OID)1

37

9

(5)


27

42

Core pre-tax income, excluding
  
repositioning items2

$431

$435

$467


$(4)

$(36)

Repositioning items3

(2)

(154)

-


(152)

2

Core pre-tax income2

$428

$281

$467


$148

$(38)

OID amortization expense

11

18

47


(6)

(35)

Income tax expense

144

94

127


50

17

(Loss) / income from discontinued
  
operations4

(5)

13

130


(18)

(135)

Net income

$268

$182

$423


$86

$(155)








Core ROTCE5

9.2%

8.2%

9.1%




Adjusted Efficiency ratio5

44%

46%

49%




GAAP Earnings / (Loss) Per Common Share
(diluted)6

$0.47

$(2.22)

$0.74


$2.69

$(0.27)

Adjusted Earnings Per Common Share6

$0.51

$0.46

$0.53


$0.04

$(0.03)


1. Corporate and Other primarily consists of Ally’s centralized treasury activities, the residual impacts of the company’s corporate funds transfer pricing and asset liability management activities, and the amortization of the discount associated with debt issuances and bond exchanges. Corporate and Other also includes the Corporate Finance business, certain investment portfolio activity and reclassifications, eliminations between the reportable operating segments, and certain unallocated expenses including overhead previously allocated to operations that have since been sold or discontinued.

2. Core pre-tax income, a non-GAAP financial measure, is defined as income from continuing operations before taxes and OID amortization expense primarily from bond exchanges and liability management actions (accelerated OID).

3. Repositioning items for 2Q15 are primarily related to the extinguishment of high-cost legacy debt. Refer to slides 21 and 22 of the Ally Financial Inc. 3Q15 Earnings Review presentation, which is available at www.ally.com/about/investor/events-presentations/ for a reconciliation to GAAP. This presentation will also be furnished on a Form 8-K with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

4. Includes a non-recurring tax benefit in 3Q14 in connection with completed sales of discontinued operations, in addition to income associated with the former China joint venture.

5. See slide 22 in the Ally Financial Inc. 3Q15 Earnings Review presentation which is available at www.ally.com/about/investor/events-presentations/ for definitions and details. Calculations can be found on page 22 of the 3Q15 Financial Supplement.

6. GAAP Earnings Per Common Share for 2Q15 is inclusive of a per share impact of $2.47 for the partial redemption of Series G and a Series A tender. Adjusted Earnings per Common Share is a non-GAAP financial measure. See slide 5 in the Ally Financial Inc. 3Q15 Earnings Review presentation which is available at www.ally.com/about/investor/events-presentations/ for detail.

Liquidity and Capital
Highlights

  • Maintained strong capital levels in third quarter 2015 with Basel III Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio3 at 9.6 percent on a fully phased-in basis.
  • Cost of funds, excluding OID, improved by 18 basis points year-over-year.

Ally’s total equity was $14.6 billion at Sept. 30, 2015, up from $14.3 billion at the end of the prior quarter. Ally’s preliminary third quarter 2015 Basel III Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio was 9.6 percent on a fully phased-in basis, and Ally’s preliminary Tier 1 capital ratio was 11.9 percent on a fully phased-in basis, both improving as a result of continued profitability and deferred tax asset (DTA) utilization.

Ally’s consolidated cash and cash equivalents decreased to $5.2 billion as of Sept. 30, 2015, from $5.9 billion at June 30, 2015, as a result of debt reduction activities in the quarter, which was partially offset by an increase in deposits. Included in this quarter’s cash balance are $2.4 billion at Ally Bank and $1.1 billion at the insurance subsidiary.

Ally continued to execute a diverse funding strategy during the third quarter of 2015. This strategy included strong growth in deposits, which represent approximately 47 percent of Ally’s funding portfolio, and completion of new term U.S. auto securitizations, which totaled approximately $1.6 billion for the quarter, as well as an additional $2.0 billion in auto loan sales in the quarter.  

Ally Bank
Highlights

  • Deposit customer base grew 16 percent year-over-year to more than 1 million customers, adding over 36,000 customers in the quarter.
  • ‘Ally Bank has been named “Best Online Bank” by MONEY® magazine for the 5th straight year’ 2011 – 2015.
  • Retail deposits totaled $53.5 billion for the third quarter, up $5.5 billion year-to-date, and $6.8 billion or 15 percent year-over-year.
  • Approximately 69 percent of Ally’s total assets were funded at Ally Bank at the end of the quarter.
  • Ranked Best in Class in back-to-back reports for customer experience in Forrester’s 2015 CX Index™ survey.
  • Introduced Apple Watch ATM and Cash Locator app for added customer convenience.

For purposes of financial reporting, operating results for Ally Bank, the company’s direct banking subsidiary, are included within Auto Finance, Mortgage and Corporate and Other, based on its underlying business activities.

Deposits
Ally Bank continued to build its deposit base and maintained strong customer loyalty, attracting and retaining customers with its value proposition. Retail deposits at Ally Bank increased to $53.5 billion as of Sept. 30, 2015, compared to $51.8 billion at the end of the prior quarter. Year-over-year, retail deposits increased $6.8 billion, up 15 percent. Retail deposit growth continued to be driven largely by savings products, which represent 57 percent of the retail deposit portfolio. Brokered deposits at Ally Bank totaled approximately $10.2 billion as of Sept. 30, 2015, up slightly compared to the prior quarter. Ally Bank continued strong expansion of its customer base to approximately 1.03 million deposit customers, growing 16 percent year-over-year.

Automotive Finance
Highlights

  • Consumer auto financing originations totaled $11.1 billion for the quarter, with 76 percent of originations now funded through Ally Bank.
  • Consumer originations were up 36 percent year-over-year, excluding GM lease and subvented originations.
  • Strong performance in the Growth channel continued as originations increased 46 percent over prior year period.
  • Strong application volume across all dealer channels, highest quarter in Ally history.
  • Closed a purchase of $607 million of consumer loans and leases from Mitsubishi Motors Credit of America.
  • Solid growth in Chrysler channel with originations up 38 percent year-over-year.
  • Automotive earning assets increased approximately 3 percent or $3.6 billion, year-over-year, despite $4.1 billion in loan sales since Sept. 30, 2014.
  • Surpassed 5 million vehicles sold on SmartAuction, an industry-leading online auction platform.

Auto Finance reported pre-tax income of $347 million for the third quarter of 2015, compared to $415 million in the corresponding prior year period. Results for the quarter were primarily driven by strong net financing revenue due to continued growth in both new and used retail loans, offsetting lower lease and commercial revenue. As a result of strong loan balance growth, provision expense increased, however credit performance remained aligned with expectations for the portfolio.

Earning assets for Auto Finance, which are comprised of consumer and commercial receivables and leases, continued to trend higher with end-of-period earning assets totaling $113.1 billion, despite $2.0 billion in auto loan sales in the quarter. Consumer earning assets totaled $80.8 billion, up 4 percent year-over-year, due to continued strong origination volume. Additionally, the company completed a purchase of $607 million of consumer loans and leases from Mitsubishi Motors Credit of America. End-of-period commercial earning assets were up slightly year-over-year at $32.3 billion for the quarter, primarily resulting from an increase in Growth and Chrysler dealer outstandings.

Consumer financing originations in the third quarter of 2015 were $11.1 billion, compared to $10.8 billion in the prior quarter and $11.8 billion in the corresponding prior year period. Origination levels remained strong, despite reduction in GM subvented and leasing originations. Origination volume was driven by year-over-year growth in the non-subvented new channel, which was up 43 percent, and in the used channel, which was up 23 percent. Growth channel originations comprised 32 percent of total originations. Originations in the quarter were comprised of $6.2 billion of new retail, $3.9 billion of used retail and $1.0 billion of leases. Excluding GM leasing and subvented originations, consumer financing originations increased 36 percent year-over-year. In addition, volume from Growth dealers increased 46 percent year-over-year.

Insurance
Highlights

  • Pre-tax income of $40 million for the third quarter, driven by improved underwriting income.
  • Weather-related losses declined quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year.

Insurance, which focuses on dealer-centric products such as extended vehicle service contracts (VSCs) and dealer inventory insurance, reported pre-tax income from continuing operations of $40 million in the third quarter of 2015, compared to pre-tax income of $60 million in the prior year period. Improved underwriting income resulting from lower weather-related losses were more than offset by a decline in investment income. Total investment income was $9 million in the third quarter of 2015, down from $53 million in the prior year period, driven by a strong equity market in 2014 that did not repeat. Written premiums declined $9 million to $254 million compared to the prior quarter.

Mortgage
During the third quarter of 2015, Mortgage reported core pre-tax income of $7 million, compared to a loss of $3 million in the prior year period. Results were primarily driven by a $9 million gain on the sale of legacy loans in the held-for-sale portfolio. The held-for-investment mortgage portfolio’s net carrying value is approximately $9.7 billion as of Sept. 30, 2015, an increase of $558 million compared to the prior quarter and $2.3 billion year-over-year, as a result of bulk loan purchases comprised of primarily high-quality, jumbo residential mortgages.

Corporate and Other
Highlights

  • Ally’s adjusted efficiency ratio improved to 44 percent, compared to 49 percent a year ago.
  • Ally Corporate Finance announced formation of a team focused on expanding into the venture-backed technology sector.

Corporate and Other primarily consists of Ally’s centralized treasury activities, the residual impacts of the company’s corporate funds transfer pricing, asset liability management activities, and the amortization of the discount associated with debt issuances and bond exchanges. Corporate and Other also includes the Corporate Finance business, certain investment portfolio activity and reclassifications, eliminations between the reportable operating segments, and overhead previously allocated to operations that have since been sold or discontinued.

Corporate and Other reported core pre-tax income (excluding core OID amortization expense and repositioning items) of $37 million, compared to a loss of $5 million in the comparable prior year period. Results were primarily affected by the continued improvement in Ally’s cost of funds. The Corporate Finance segment continued to grow and reported core pre-tax income of $16 million for the quarter.

Core OID amortization expense totaled $11 million, compared to $47 million reported in the corresponding prior year period.

Additional Financial Information

For additional financial information, the third quarter 2015 earnings presentation and financial supplement are available in the Events & Presentations section of Ally’s Investor Relations Website at http://www.ally.com/about/investor/events-presentations/.

About Ally Financial Inc.

Ally Financial Inc. (NYSE: ALLY) is a leading automotive financial services company powered by a top direct banking franchise. Ally’s automotive services business offers a full spectrum of financial products and services, including new and used vehicle inventory and consumer financing, leasing, vehicle service contracts, commercial loans and vehicle remarketing services, as well as a variety of insurance offerings, including inventory insurance, insurance consultative services for dealers and other ancillary products. Ally Bank, the company’s direct banking subsidiary and member FDIC, offers an array of deposit products, including certificates of deposit, savings accounts, money market accounts, IRA deposit products and interest checking. Ally’s Corporate Finance unit provides financing to middle-market companies across a broad range of industries.

With approximately $156.1 billion in assets as of Sept. 30, 2015, Ally operates as a financial holding company. For more information, visit the Ally media site at http://media.ally.com or follow Ally on Twitter: @Ally.

Forward-Looking Statements
In this earnings release and in comments by Ally Financial Inc. (“Ally”) management, the use of the words “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “forecast,” “initiative,” “objective,” “plan,” “goal,” “project,” “outlook,” “priorities,” “target,” “explore,” “positions,” “intend,” “evaluate,” “pursue,” “seek,” “may,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “believe,” “potential,” “continue,” or the negative of any of those words or similar expressions is intended to identify forward-looking statements. All statements herein and in related charts and management comments, other than statements of historical fact, including without limitation, statements about future events and financial performance, are forward-looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties.

While these statements represent our current judgment on what the future may hold, and we believe these judgments are reasonable, these statements are not guarantees of any events or financial results, and Ally’s actual results may differ materially due to numerous important factors that are described in the most recent reports on SEC Forms 10-K and 10-Q for Ally, each of which may be revised or supplemented in subsequent reports filed with the SEC. Such factors include, among others, the following: maintaining the mutually beneficial relationship between Ally and General Motors, and Ally and Chrysler, and our ability to further diversify our business; our ability to maintain relationships with automotive dealers; the significant regulation and restrictions that we are subject to as a bank holding company and financial holding company; the potential for deterioration in the residual value of off-lease vehicles; disruptions in the market in which we fund our operations, with resulting negative impact on our liquidity; changes in our accounting assumptions that may require or that result from changes in the accounting rules or their application, which could result in an impact on earnings; changes in our credit ratings; changes in economic conditions, currency exchange rates or political stability in the markets in which we operate; and changes in the existing or the adoption of new laws, regulations, policies or other activities of governments, agencies and similar organizations (including as a result of the Dodd-Frank Act and Basel III).

Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Ally undertakes no obligation to update publicly or otherwise revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or other such factors that affect the subject of these statements, except where expressly required by law.

Contacts:

Gina Proia
646-781-2692
gina.proia@ally.com

Sarah Comstock
313-656-6954
sarah.n.comstock@ally.com

_________________________

1 Adjusted EPS and Core Pre-Tax Income are each non-GAAP financial measures. Refer to the Results by Segment table in this press release for details.

2 Originations from non-GM/Chrysler dealers.

3 Ally’s preliminary Basel III Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio, reflective of transition provisions, is 10.0%. Common Equity Tier 1 is a non-GAAP financial measure. See page 16 of the 3Q15 Financial Supplement for details.

 

SOURCE Ally Financial

RELATED LINKS
http://www.ally.com

Beverly Hills Tax Solutions: The Way To Financial Freedom

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Beverly Hills Tax Solutions is one of Los Angeles’ most prestigious full-service income tax preparation companies. Launched in 2007, Beverly Hills Tax Solutions was created with the purpose of helping individuals along with businesses obtain relief and resolution from their IRS problems. This Beverly Hills based company focuses on resolving client’s IRS complications such as wage garnishments, bank levies, IRS tax liens, and unfiled back taxes. With our team of highly skilled professionals, well-qualified tax attorneys, enrolled agents, and certified public accountants we perform at the highest standard of excellence.

Beverly Hills Tax Solutions is pleased to welcome Marc Phelps to our team. Marc is our Certified Public Accountant. Marc is a member of the AICPA and he brings with him 24 years of extensive experience in auditing, reporting, and compliance requirements for small businesses, affordable housing, and non-profit agencies. Mr. Phelps is dedicated and committed to providing you cost effective and high-quality service. You will get financial information in a timely and accurate manner.

Beverly Hills Tax Solutions would also like to welcome Steven Yonan to our company. Steven Yonan is our attorney and we are happy to have his wealth of experience in law practice. Mr. Yonan is a member of the American Bar Association (Tax Section), the State Bar of California (Tax Section), and the San Diego County Bar Association (Tax Section). He is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Southern District of California, and the Supreme Court of the State of California. If you are overwhelmed with your tax debt, please contact Beverly Hills Tax Solution. We are the best solution for you.

About Us:
Beverly Hills Tax Group offers various services to people and businesses dealing with tax problems such as wage garnishments, bank levies, IRS tax liens, and unfiled back taxes. Beverly Hills Tax Solutions has a team of experienced attorneys and certified public accountants working in union to negotiate the best offer for you. We are committed to getting you the lowest possible IRS payment that is allowed by law. We will not let you retain our services unless you are a legitimate candidate for tax relief. The IRS has strict guidelines regarding eligibility so therefore we tell our clients what tax options are available to them. Beverly Hills Tax Solutions has resolved tax problems for individuals and businesses for many years. 877.212.2118

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151023/280125LOGO

 

 

SOURCE Beverly Hills Tax Solutions

RELATED LINKS
http://bhtaxsolutions.com

Complete Credit Repair Only $1,499.00 by Credit Restoration Consultants

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL — Experts are talking recession and families are wondering how to protect their financial security. With the foreclosure epidemic, unemployment at an all time high, and Congress scrambling to bail out the financial industry, many consumers are experiencing severe stress as it relates to their economic stability and general well being. Although gasoline prices have fallen into the low $2.30 range, the economy is struggling with food prices and professional services that have increased at alarming rates. As a result, many families have scaled back on their spending to include only the necessities. 

In an ever worsening economy your good name and reputation within the community is becoming more important. Creditors have tightened their guidelines effectively barring millions of Americans from borrowing money. Even those with excellent credit are experiencing reduced credit limits and closed equity lines. Mortgage lenders, auto finance companies, credit card issuers and banks have all raised the bar. Borrowers with low credit scores can expect to be denied or to pay significantly higher interest rates than those with excellent credit. Long gone are the days of obtaining credit, goods, benefits, services and/or employment with a 620 credit score. In more instances than not, a consumer will be denied if they maintain a credit score lower than 720. 

The terms credit repair, credit restoration and/or credit rehabilitation are somewhat synomous. Those with bad credit cannot afford to ignore the potential benefits of credit repair. In today’s society, credit repair is more important than ever. Approximately 78% of credit profiles contain some sort of error or omission materially impacting credit worthiness. As such, one would be wise to at least explore retaining a reputable credit service organization in the restoration of their own good name and reputation within the community. With that said, Credit Restoration Consultants may be that credit service organization. 

Credit Restoration Consultants is a credit service organization specializing in the restoration of consumer credit worthiness as well as identity theft. We assist consumers in achieving a favorable financial credit profile. Everything we do is legal utilizing laws enacted by Congress to dispute negative, erroneous, obsolete, and/or fraudulent information contained within your consumer credit profile.

Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, and the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, Credit Restoration Consultants will assist a consumer in the submission of disputes electronically, verbally and in writing to the Equifax, Experian and Trans Union consumer reporting agencies in addition to creditors, collection agencies, third-party record providers and state/federal/private regulatory authorities. Keep in mind that anything Credit Restoration Consultants can do – you can do yourself. Where Credit Restoration Consultants has the edge is the fact that we possess the education, knowledge and a source proven method which yields results.
 
Unlike most credit service organizations that submit the same written dispute letters monthly, Credit Restoration Consultants has devised a strategy whereby disputes are submitted electronically, verbally and in writing over a six month period to the credit reporting agencies, creditors, collectors, and third-party record providers reporting negative, inaccurate, obsolete and/or erroneous information. Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, in addition to laws applicable to a particular state, Credit Restoration Consultants has obtained thousands of deletions and updates for its clients. Credit Restoration Consultants can help remove erroneous and/or inaccurate judgments, liens, bankruptcies, student loans, inquiries, derogatory tradelines, personal identifiers and more! While the credit restoration process can take anywhere from 30 days to six months, most clients see dramatic results in 45-60 days.
 
Credit repair, credit restoration and/or credit rehabilitation is as legal as pleading “not guilty” in a court of law. With that said, one must understand that as a credit service organization Credit Restoration Consultants is not a law firm and that none of its employees is an attorney licensed to practice law in the state of Florida. As such, Credit Restoration Consultants cannot provide legal advice nor represent any individual before any court or in any legal proceeding. In the event that legal representation is required, Credit Restoration Consultants may provide an appropriate attorney referral for consultation. 

Still not convinced as to the benefit of utilizing Credit Restoration Consultants in the restoration of your good name and reputation within the community? You should tune into the Credit Restoration Consultants Hour with credit repair expert Bill Lewis. Bill can be heard weekday’s on the 9′s – both 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. eastern time – on AM 1470 WWNN in south Florida. For those listening online, streaming audio can be accessed at www.WWNNRadio.com by clicking on the listen live link.
 
For more information on Credit Restoration Consultants or to discuss the $1,499.00 Internet special, please contact us at (954) 581-5050 or online at www.TalkAboutCredit.com.

Milestone: 100 Million Consumer Accounts Now Get Access to FICO® Scores for Free

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Holders of 100 million consumer accounts in the U.S. now have regular access to FICO® Scores for free. FICO (NYSE: FICO) announced the major milestone today, less than two years after the FICO® Score Open Access program launched.

“The more consumers know about their own credit health, the better it is for everyone,” said Jim Wehmann, executive vice president, Scores, at FICO. “Just two years ago we launched FICO Score Open Access with the holders of 8 million consumer accounts able to receive their FICO Scores for free, and today we have surpassed 100 million, thanks to the nation’s lenders that share our commitment to consumer financial empowerment. Because the process of obtaining credit can be confusing, there’s no better place for people to start than with the actual credit scores their lenders are using.”

FICO® Score Open Access, the program that allows lenders to provide FICO® Scores to consumers for free, has proven beneficial for both consumers and lenders, as described in a new report published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia’s Payment Card Center and based on data from Barclaycard, a participant in the FICO program.1

The report summarizes Barclaycard’s experience providing cardholders with regular, free access to their FICO® Scores through the FICO® Score Open Access program. Among Barclaycard’s findings:

  • 84 percent of enrolled cardholders check their FICO Scores every month
  • Credit card utilization by the riskiest cardholders generally declines after they enroll in the program
  • Delinquency rates of the people enrolled in the program remain below those of their nonparticipating peers for up to nine months after enrollment

“The program aligns with our overall business philosophy of being fair and transparent,” said Paul Wilmore, Managing Director of Barclaycard. “We are pleased that the preliminary data shows that cardmembers actively accessing this information are becoming better consumers of credit.”

The success of the FICO program extends beyond the holders of 100 million consumer accounts. FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling, launched to help the estimated one million consumers annually who are in need of credit and financial guidance, has signed on more than 30 non-profit credit counseling providers just six months after launching. The program has enabled qualified counselors, like those at New York Legal Assistance Group, to share FICO Scores along with additional credit education materials, so they can have deeper conversations with their clients and help provide a more sustainable path to rebuilding their financial health.

“This tool has provided an unprecedented opportunity for our counseling program, and the low-income, vulnerable populations we serve,” said Doug Ostrov, director of financial counseling at the New York Legal Assistance Group. “By accessing individual FICO Scores, these consumers and their financial counselors can have a fruitful conversation about what these scores mean and how they can be improved to enhance a person’s overall economic stability. Our clients are eagerly attending workshops where we share FICO Scores. It provides a teaching moment, where clients see for themselves what the problems are and how, together, we can make a plan to fix them. In just a few short months, NYLAG has disclosed FICO Scores to more than 500 clients – and we look forward to working with hundreds more as the program unfolds.”

Eligible organizations interested in participating in the FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling program may visit the FICO Community for credit and financial counseling.

The FICO® Score Open Access program is available to all financial services providers in the U.S. who use FICO® Scores to manage consumer credit. Institutions can visit http://subscribe.fico.com/open-access for further information and details.

About FICO
FICO (NYSE: FICO) is a leading analytics software company, helping businesses in 90+ countries make better decisions that drive higher levels of growth, profitability and customer satisfaction. The company’s groundbreaking use of Big Data and mathematical algorithms to predict consumer behavior has transformed entire industries. FICO provides analytics software and tools used across multiple industries to manage risk, fight fraud, build more profitable customer relationships, optimize operations and meet strict government regulations. Many of our products reach industry-wide adoption. These include the FICO® Score, the standard measure of consumer credit risk in the United States. FICO solutions leverage open-source standards and cloud computing to maximize flexibility, speed deployment and reduce costs. The company also helps millions of people manage their personal credit health.

FICO: Make every decision count. Learn more at www.fico.com.

For FICO news and media resources, visit www.fico.com/news.

FICO and “Make every decision count” are trademarks or registered trademarks of Fair Isaac Corporation in the United States and in other countries.

About Barclaycard:
Headquartered in Wilmington, Del., Barclaycard US is the fastest growing top 10 credit card issuer in the nation.  The company creates customized, co-branded credit card programs for some of the country’s most successful travel, entertainment, retail, affinity and financial institutions. The business also issues its own Barclaycard branded credit cards: Barclaycard Ring, Barclaycard Rewards, and the award winning Barclaycard Arrival product series.  Additional information on Barclaycard can be found at BarclaycardUS.com.

Stay up to date on Twitter: @barclaycardus  | YouTube: youtube.com/BarclaycardUS | Travel Community: barclaycardtravel.com | Facebook: facebook.com/BarclaycardUS  | Instagram: instagram.com/barclaycardus

1Nothing in the text should be construed as an endorsement by the Payment Cards Center or the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia of any organization, its products, and/or services.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111010/CG83314LOGO

SOURCE FICO

RELATED LINKS
http://www.fico.com

Your Good Name and Credit Reputation are Important in Tough Economic Times

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA — In an ever worsening economy your good name and reputation within the community is becoming more important. Creditors have tightened their guidelines effectively barring millions of Americans from borrowing money. Even those with excellent credit are experiencing reduced credit limits and closed equity lines. Mortgage lenders, auto finance companies, credit card issuers and banks have all raised the bar. Borrowers with low credit scores can expect to be denied or to pay significantly higher interest rates than those with excellent credit. Long gone are the days of obtaining credit, goods, benefits, services and/or employment with a 620 credit score. In more instances than not, a consumer will be denied if they maintain a credit score lower than 720.

The terms credit repair, credit restoration and/or credit rehabilitation are somewhat synomous. Those with bad credit cannot afford to ignore the potential benefits of credit repair. In today’s society, credit repair is more important than ever. Approximately 78% of credit profiles contain some sort of error or omission materially impacting credit worthiness. As such, one would be wise to at least explore retaining a reputable credit service organization in the restoration of their own good name and reputation within the community. With that said, Credit Restoration Consultants may be that credit service organization.

Credit Restoration Consultants is a credit service organization specializing in the restoration of consumer credit worthiness as well as identity theft. We assist consumers in achieving a favorable financial credit profile. Everything we do is legal utilizing laws enacted by Congress to dispute negative, erroneous, obsolete, and/or fraudulent information contained within your consumer credit profile.

Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, and the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, Credit Restoration Consultants will assist a consumer in the submission of disputes electronically, verbally and in writing to the Equifax, Experian and Trans Union consumer reporting agencies in addition to creditors, collection agencies, third-party record providers and state/federal/private regulatory authorities. Keep in mind that anything Credit Restoration Consultants can do – you can do yourself. Where Credit Restoration Consultants has the edge is the fact that we possess the education, knowledge and a source proven method which yields results.

Unlike most credit service organizations that submit the same written dispute letters monthly, Credit Restoration Consultants has devised a strategy whereby disputes are submitted electronically, verbally and in writing over a six month period to the credit reporting agencies, creditors, collectors, and third-party record providers reporting negative, inaccurate, obsolete and/or erroneous information. Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, in addition to laws applicable to a particular state, Credit Restoration Consultants has obtained thousands of deletions and updates for its clients. Credit Restoration Consultants can help remove erroneous and/or inaccurate judgments, liens, bankruptcies, student loans, inquiries, derogatory tradelines, personal identifiers and more! While the credit restoration process can take anywhere from 30 days to six months, most clients see dramatic results in 45-60 days.

Still not convinced as to the benefit of utilizing Credit Restoration Consultants in the restoration of your good name and reputation within the community? You should tune into “The Credit Report with Bill Lewis.” As a nationally known credit repair expert, Bill can be heard weekday’s on the 9′s – both 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. eastern time – on AM 1470 WWNN in south Florida. For those listening online, streaming audio can be accessed at www.wwnnradio.com/ by clicking on the listen live link.

For more information on Credit Restoration Consultants or to discuss existing special offers, please contact us at (954) 581-5050 or online at www.talkaboutcredit.com

CAN Capital Named to Inc. 5000 List for Third Consecutive Year

NEW YORK, Aug. 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – CAN Capital, the market share leader in alternative small business finance, has made the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies in America for the third year in a row. With 17 years in business, the company continues to see significant yearly growth and profitability while remaining committed to its core business of providing small businesses with fast, efficient access to working capital.

“We’re honored to be recognized as part of the Inc. 5000 once again,” said Daniel DeMeo, Chief Executive Officer, CAN Capital. “This year, we hit the milestone of providing small businesses with access to more than $5 billion of working capital, more than any other company in the space. This speaks to the power of our extensive experience, our unique proprietary data-driven models and our customer-focused technologies, all of which are used to meet the larger goal of helping small businesses succeed.”  

This past year, CAN Capital announced a number of significant achievements. In April, the company secured a $650 million credit facility from a dozen leading lenders to expand and accelerate the growth of its small business finance programs. CAN Capital also closed its first capital markets asset-backed notes offering in a $200 million securitization transaction, selling $191 million of fixed rate notes, $171 million of which were rated “A” by both DBRS and Standard & Poor’s.  In addition, the company’s CAN Connect™ suite of Application Program Interfaces (APIs) that enable third parties to offer their small business customers access to working capital, continues to expand with announced partnerships with Yodlee and Worldpay.

To date, CAN Capital has facilitated over 160,000 small business fundings in more than 540 unique industries. CAN Capital’s customer base continues to expand and its digital business grew 600 percent in 2014. During the past five years, CAN Capital has experienced significant growth, including a 29% originations CAGR and a 24% revenue CAGR, with commensurate growth in earnings.

“It’s an exciting time to be in the alternative finance industry with new attention being paid to the space. Ever since it was started 17 years ago by a small business owner, CAN Capital has been the innovator in the industry and we’re committed to maintaining our spot as market-share leader,” added DeMeo.

Inc. has been celebrating the fastest-growing private companies in America with its annual list for the past 33 years.

About Inc.
Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders.  Total monthly audience reach for the brand has grown significantly from 2,000,000 in 2010 to over 6,000,000 today.  For more information, visit www.inc.com.

About CAN Capital
CAN Capital, Inc., established in 1998, is the pioneer and market share leader in alternative small business finance, having provided access to $5.0 billion in capital for thousands of small businesses in a wide range of locations and different business types.

As a technology-powered financial services provider, CAN Capital uses innovative and proprietary risk models combined with daily performance data to evaluate business performance and facilitate access to capital for entrepreneurs in a fast and efficient way.  

CAN Capital, an Inc. 5000 fastest-growing company, makes capital available to businesses through its subsidiaries: Merchant Cash Advances by CAN Capital Merchant Services, Inc., and business loans through CAN Capital Asset Servicing, Inc. (CCAS). Business loans obtained through CCAS are made by WebBank, a Utah-chartered Industrial Bank, member FDIC.

For more information, please visit: www.cancapital.com. Follow CAN Capital on Twitter and Facebook.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140605/94885

SOURCE CAN Capital, Inc.

RELATED LINKS
http://www.cancapital.com

Complete Credit Repair Only $1,499.00 by Credit Restoration Consultants

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL — Experts are talking recession and families are wondering how to protect their financial security. With the foreclosure epidemic, unemployment at an all time high, and Congress scrambling to bail out the financial industry, many consumers are experiencing severe stress as it relates to their economic stability and general well being. Although gasoline prices have fallen into the low $2.30 range, the economy is struggling with food prices and professional services that have increased at alarming rates. As a result, many families have scaled back on their spending to include only the necessities. 

In an ever worsening economy your good name and reputation within the community is becoming more important. Creditors have tightened their guidelines effectively barring millions of Americans from borrowing money. Even those with excellent credit are experiencing reduced credit limits and closed equity lines. Mortgage lenders, auto finance companies, credit card issuers and banks have all raised the bar. Borrowers with low credit scores can expect to be denied or to pay significantly higher interest rates than those with excellent credit. Long gone are the days of obtaining credit, goods, benefits, services and/or employment with a 620 credit score. In more instances than not, a consumer will be denied if they maintain a credit score lower than 720. 

The terms credit repair, credit restoration and/or credit rehabilitation are somewhat synomous. Those with bad credit cannot afford to ignore the potential benefits of credit repair. In today’s society, credit repair is more important than ever. Approximately 78% of credit profiles contain some sort of error or omission materially impacting credit worthiness. As such, one would be wise to at least explore retaining a reputable credit service organization in the restoration of their own good name and reputation within the community. With that said, Credit Restoration Consultants may be that credit service organization. 

Credit Restoration Consultants is a credit service organization specializing in the restoration of consumer credit worthiness as well as identity theft. We assist consumers in achieving a favorable financial credit profile. Everything we do is legal utilizing laws enacted by Congress to dispute negative, erroneous, obsolete, and/or fraudulent information contained within your consumer credit profile.

Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, and the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, Credit Restoration Consultants will assist a consumer in the submission of disputes electronically, verbally and in writing to the Equifax, Experian and Trans Union consumer reporting agencies in addition to creditors, collection agencies, third-party record providers and state/federal/private regulatory authorities. Keep in mind that anything Credit Restoration Consultants can do – you can do yourself. Where Credit Restoration Consultants has the edge is the fact that we possess the education, knowledge and a source proven method which yields results.
 
Unlike most credit service organizations that submit the same written dispute letters monthly, Credit Restoration Consultants has devised a strategy whereby disputes are submitted electronically, verbally and in writing over a six month period to the credit reporting agencies, creditors, collectors, and third-party record providers reporting negative, inaccurate, obsolete and/or erroneous information. Utilizing the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Billing Act, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, in addition to laws applicable to a particular state, Credit Restoration Consultants has obtained thousands of deletions and updates for its clients. Credit Restoration Consultants can help remove erroneous and/or inaccurate judgments, liens, bankruptcies, student loans, inquiries, derogatory tradelines, personal identifiers and more! While the credit restoration process can take anywhere from 30 days to six months, most clients see dramatic results in 45-60 days.
 
Credit repair, credit restoration and/or credit rehabilitation is as legal as pleading “not guilty” in a court of law. With that said, one must understand that as a credit service organization Credit Restoration Consultants is not a law firm and that none of its employees is an attorney licensed to practice law in the state of Florida. As such, Credit Restoration Consultants cannot provide legal advice nor represent any individual before any court or in any legal proceeding. In the event that legal representation is required, Credit Restoration Consultants may provide an appropriate attorney referral for consultation. 

Still not convinced as to the benefit of utilizing Credit Restoration Consultants in the restoration of your good name and reputation within the community? You should tune into the Credit Restoration Consultants Hour with credit repair expert Bill Lewis. Bill can be heard weekday’s on the 9′s – both 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. eastern time – on AM 1470 WWNN in south Florida. For those listening online, streaming audio can be accessed at www.WWNNRadio.com by clicking on the listen live link.
 
For more information on Credit Restoration Consultants or to discuss the $1,499.00 Internet special, please contact us at (954) 581-5050 or online at www.TalkAboutCredit.com.

Is a College Education Worth the Cost? American Sentiment is on the Rise

BLOOMINGTON, Ill., Aug. 4, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – After six years of increasing negativity, Americans are feeling more optimistic about investing in a college education according to the latest COUNTRY Financial Security Index.

With the economy and financial sentiment rebounding in 2015, this is the first time Americans’ thoughts on investing in a college education have moved positively in the last seven years. Fifty-two percent of Americans currently believe a college education is a good financial investment, up from 48 percent in 2014. However, Americans are still far from reaching the pre-financial crisis levels of optimism. In 2008, 81 percent of Americans felt strongly about investing in education.

“The vast majority of college graduates (83 percent) are glad they invested in a college education,” says Joe Buhrmann, manager of financial security at COUNTRY Financial. “While this might not be consolation for soon-to-be college students weighing the costs of higher education, there are ways to help lower the near-term financial burdens and maximize the long-term benefits a college education provides.”

Cutting back on campus life

To help decrease the burden of higher education expenses, the majority of college graduates sacrificed some of their free time to work during college. Among four-year college graduates, at least three out of four respondents (77 percent) reported working during college to cover their expenses as students.

Americans, however, are split on what is a better investment: a part-time job to pay the bills or an unpaid internship that may pay dividends in future careers. Fifty-four percent of Americans would advise a college freshman to take a part-time job to help pay for college, while 44 percent recommend an unpaid internship to gain career experience.

Students are also proactively looking for ways to save money while earning a degree. Along with tuition, housing can be one of the most expensive college costs, but students are taking measures to reduce or eliminate this expense.

  • Recent grads aren’t the only ones moving home after school to save money. More than a third (34 percent) of Americans with college degrees lived at home while they were in school to cut back on housing expenses.
  • To manage housing costs during college, 42 percent of college graduates report living with at least one roommate and 40 percent lived in campus housing.

The smaller costs add up too – 71 percent of Americans with a college degree felt that the cost of education played a role in their ability to participate in extracurricular activities, and may have opted not to join organizations such as Greek life or club sports due to cost.

“College leads to additional responsibilities like managing new expenses. It’s important to control these costs during your time on campus to avoid making additional sacrifices and accumulating debt that could add to the burden of student loans,” adds Buhrmann.

To help manage costs during time on campus consider these simple tips:

  1. Be aware of the amount of student loan debt you will accumulate and have a plan in place for after graduation. Millennials report they are more than twice as likely as older college graduates to delay major life events such as: getting married, buying a house or having a baby, due to the burden of their student loan debt.
  2. Be sure to explore all financial aid options before enrolling. This includes completing your FAFSA and applying for local and national scholarships.
  3. Compare the cost-of-living for different campuses before enrollment. Be sure to seek alternatives like a Residence Assistant program and student housing options.
  4. Seek employment opportunities – both on and off campus. Working part-time while earning your degree will provide extra spending money for necessities. Many campuses offer work-study programs as an option as well.
  5. Consider money saving options for supplies and materials. For example, rent textbooks instead of purchasing them.

The COUNTRY Financial Security Index®

Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has measured Americans’ sentiments of their personal financial security. The Index also delves deeper into individual personal finance topics to better inform Americans about the issues impacting their finances. Survey data, videos and analysis are available at www.countryfinancialsecurityblog.com and on Twitter at @FinanceSecure.

The COUNTRY Financial Security Index was created by COUNTRY Financial and is compiled by GfK, an independent research firm. Surveys were conducted using GfK’s KnowledgePanel®, a national, probability-based panel designed to be representative of the general population and includes responses from approximately 1,000 U.S. adults for national surveys, plus a sample of approximately 1000 adults with a College Graduate (4+) degree for this survey. The margin of sampling error for a survey based on this many interviews is approximately +/- 3 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.

Figures cited from 2008 were compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm, based on a national telephone and online survey of at least 3,000 Americans. The margin of sampling error for the 2008 survey based on this many interviews was approximately +/- 2 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.

About COUNTRY Financial
The COUNTRY Financial group (www.countryfinancial.com) serves about one million households and businesses throughout the United States. It offers a full range of financial products and services from auto, home, business and life insurance to retirement planning services, investment management and annuities.

Contact
Jordan Fisher
Edelman
(312) 240-2951
Jordan.Fisher@Edelman.com

 

SOURCE COUNTRY Financial

Related Links

http://www.countryfinancial.com

SoFi Becomes First Fintech Company to Earn AAA DBRS Rating, Prices $417.6 Million Securitization of Refinanced Student Loans

SAN FRANCISCO, July 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – SoFi, the nation’s second largest marketplace lender, today announced it has priced a securitization of $417.6 million in refinanced student loans. It also announced it is the first fintech company to receive an “AAA” rating from DBRS and an “AA2″ from Moody’s for the senior notes, which equaled $387.3 million.

“We’re thrilled to continue our history of firsts,” said Nino Fanlo, SoFi CFO/COO. “Last year we were the first marketplace lender to secure investment grade ratings from the leading agencies, and now we’re the first fintech company to receive a Triple A rating from DBRS.  It’s gratifying to see our investor base deepen, including twenty of the world’s leading and most highly regarded institutional investors. These ratings are further proof that we’re creating capital efficiency that strengthens the value of our products for our members,” he said.  

In total, SoFi has completed six securitizations of refinanced student loans with a total value of more than $1.85 billion.  In the coming months, SoFi expects to broaden its securitization transactions into other asset classes, such as personal loans and mortgages, where its loan volume continues to grow.

SoFi completed its first rated securitization in 2013.  In 2014, SoFi became the first marketplace lender to secure investment grade ratings from S&P and Moody’s for senior notes in a securitization.

“More broadly, we believe we’ve led about two thirds of the total securitizations in the marketplace industry.  Looking ahead, we look forward to strengthening our leadership position and broadening the appeal of these transactions even further,” continued Fanlo.

About SoFi

SoFi is a leader in marketplace lending and the largest provider of student loan refinancing, with over $3 billion dollars in loans funded. Recently recognized by CNBC as a Disruptor 50, we’re transforming financial services for early stage professionals with student loan refinancing, mortgages, personal loans, and MBA loans.  Unlike traditional lenders, our proprietary underwriting approach takes into account merit and employment history to offer unique credit products our members won’t find elsewhere.  We offer individual and institutional investors the ability to create positive social impact on the communities they care about while earning compelling rates of return.  For more information, visit SoFi.com.

For press inquiries:
Debra Jack
djack@sofi.com  / 415-706-5012

The securities priced today have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or applicable state securities laws, and may not be offered or sold in the United States except pursuant to an exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act and applicable state securities laws.

This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy these securities, and there shall not be any offer or sale of these securities in any state in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful.

 

SOURCE SoFi

RELATED LINKS
http://www.sofi.com

SunTrust Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results

ATLANTA, July 17, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — SunTrust Banks, Inc. (NYSE: STI) today reported net income available to common shareholders of $467 million, or $0.89 per average common diluted share compared to $0.78 per share earned in the prior quarter.  The current quarter was favorably impacted by a $0.03 per share discrete income tax benefit. 

Earnings per share increased $0.17 over the second quarter of 2014, which was negatively impacted by $0.09 per share, related to the resolution of specific legacy mortgage-related matters, partially offset by the gain on sale of RidgeWorth.  Excluding the prior-year matters, earnings per share grew 10% year over year. 

For the first half of 2015, earnings per share were $1.67.  Excluding the aforementioned matters which negatively impacted the prior year, earnings per share grew 8% over the same period in 2014.

“Our performance this quarter demonstrates solid execution of our key strategies – deepening client relationships, optimizing the balance sheet, and improving efficiency.  This was evidenced by higher revenue, continued deposit growth, and improved returns.  In addition, our asset quality performance continues to be strong,” said William H. Rogers, Jr., chairman and CEO of SunTrust Banks, Inc.  “As we look forward, we are confident in our strategies and remain intensely focused on delivering further value to our clients and shareholders.”

Second Quarter 2015 Financial Highlights

Income Statement

  • Net income available to common shareholders was $467 million, or $0.89 per average common diluted share.
    • Represents a 14% sequential quarter increase and includes a $0.03 per share favorable impact from a discrete income tax item in the current quarter.
  • Total revenues increased 4% compared to the prior quarter due to higher net interest income and broad-based growth in fee income.
    • Net interest income grew 2% sequentially due to a 3 basis point increase in the net interest margin and one additional day.
    • Noninterest income increased 7% sequentially driven by increases in most fee income categories, most notably investment banking income.
  • Noninterest expense increased 4% compared to the prior quarter, primarily driven by $14 million of debt extinguishment costs in the current quarter, as well as discrete recoveries recognized in the prior quarter.  Certain incentive costs also increased sequentially due to improved business performance.
  • The efficiency and tangible efficiency ratios in the current quarter were 63.9% and 63.6%, respectively.

Balance Sheet

  • Average loan balances declined slightly compared to the prior quarter primarily due to loan sale activity, offset by growth in higher yielding loan products, improving the overall loan mix.
  • Average client deposits increased 2% sequentially and 9% compared to the second quarter of 2014, with all of the growth coming from low-cost deposits, resulting in continued favorable mix shift.  The deposit growth also drove a reduction in higher-cost wholesale funding.

Capital

  • Estimated capital ratios continued to be well above regulatory requirements. The Common Equity Tier 1 ratio and Tier 1 capital ratios were estimated to be 9.8% and 10.5%, respectively, as of June 30, 2015, on a fully phased-in basis.
  • During the quarter, the Company increased its quarterly common stock dividend from $0.20 per share to $0.24 per share and repurchased $175 million of its common stock.  The Company repurchased $115 million of common stock in the prior quarter.
  • Book value per share was $42.46, and tangible book value per share was $30.65, both up sequentially.

Asset Quality

  • Asset quality continued to improve, as nonperforming loans declined 21% from the prior quarter and totaled 0.36% of total loans at June 30, 2015.  The decline was primarily driven by a $110 million transfer of nonperforming mortgage loans to loans held-for-sale.
  • Net charge-offs for the current quarter were $87 million, representing 0.26% of average loans on an annualized basis, declining from $99 million in the prior quarter and $113 million in the second quarter of 2014.
  • The provision for credit losses decreased $29 million and $47 million compared to the prior quarter and the second quarter of 2014, respectively, driven by the continued improvement in asset quality, combined with slower loan growth.
  • At June 30, 2015, the allowance for loan and lease losses to period-end loans ratio was 1.39%, 4 basis points lower than the prior quarter given further improvements in asset quality.






Presented on a fully taxable-equivalent basis






Income Statement (Dollars in millions, except per share data)

2Q 2014


1Q 2015


2Q 2015

Net income available to common shareholders

$387



$411



$467


Earnings per average common diluted share

0.72



0.78



0.89


Adjusted earnings per average common diluted share (1)

0.81



0.78



0.89


Total revenue

2,201



1,992



2,077


Net interest income

1,244



1,175



1,203


Provision for credit losses

73



55



26


Noninterest income

957



817



874


Noninterest expense

1,517



1,280



1,328


Net interest margin

3.11

%


2.83

%


2.86

%







Balance Sheet (Dollars in billions)






Average loans

$130.7



$133.3



$132.8


Average consumer and commercial deposits

130.5



140.5



142.9








Capital






Capital ratios at period end (2) :






Tier 1 capital (transitional)

N/A



10.76

%


10.75

%

Common Equity Tier 1 (“CET1″) (transitional)

N/A



9.89

%


9.90

%

Common Equity Tier 1 (“CET1″) (fully phased-in)

N/A



9.74

%


9.75

%

Total average shareholders’ equity to total average assets

12.23

%


12.24

%


12.34

%







Asset Quality






Net charge-offs to average loans (annualized)

0.35

%


0.30

%


0.26

%

Allowance for loan and lease losses to period-end loans

1.55

%


1.43

%


1.39

%

Nonperforming loans to total loans

0.69

%


0.46

%


0.36

%


(1) See page 23 for non-U.S. GAAP reconciliation

(2) Current period Tier 1 capital and CET1 ratios are estimated as of the date of this news release. Basel III Final Rules became effective for the Company on January 1, 2015; thus, Basel III capital ratios are not applicable (“N/A”) in periods ending prior to January 1, 2015.

 

Consolidated Financial Performance Details 
(Presented on a fully taxable-equivalent basis unless otherwise noted)

Revenue

Total revenue was $2.1 billion for the current quarter, an increase of $85 million compared to the prior quarter.  The increase was driven by higher net interest income and broad-based growth in noninterest income, with particularly strong growth in investment banking income.  Compared to the second quarter of 2014, total revenue declined $124 million; however, excluding the gain on sale of RidgeWorth in the second quarter of 2014, revenue declined $19 million, driven largely by a decrease in net interest income and foregone RidgeWorth revenue, partially offset by higher investment banking income. 

For the six months ended June 30, 2015, total revenue was $4.1 billion, a decline of $161 million compared to the first six months of 2014.  The decline was driven by the gain on sale of RidgeWorth and associated foregone revenue and a decline in net interest income, partially offset by increases in most noninterest income categories.

Net Interest Income

Net interest income was $1.2 billion for the current quarter, an increase of $28 million compared to the prior quarter.  The increase was primarily due to an additional day in the second quarter, an improvement in core loan yields, and higher commercial loan-related swap income.  Compared to the second quarter of 2014, the $41 million decline in net interest income was driven by lower commercial loan-related swap income and lower earning asset yields, partially offset by growth in average earning assets.

Net interest margin for the current quarter was 2.86% compared to 2.83% in the prior quarter and 3.11% in the second quarter of 2014. The 3 basis point increase compared to the prior quarter was largely driven by higher commercial loan-related swap income and higher consumer and mortgage loan yields.  The 25 basis point decline in net interest margin compared to the second quarter of 2014 was due primarily to 20 and 52 basis point declines in loan and investment securities yields, respectively. The decline in loan yields was due to a reduction in commercial loan-related swap income, as well as the prolonged low interest rate environment, which impacted both loan and investment security yields.

For the six months ended June 30, 2015, net interest income was $2.4 billion, a $105 million decrease compared to the first six months of 2014. The net interest margin was 2.85% for the first half of 2015, a 30 basis point decline compared to the same period in 2014.  The declines in both net interest income and net interest margin were driven by the same factors that impacted the year-over-year comparisons discussed above.

Noninterest Income

Noninterest income was $874 million for the current quarter, compared to $817 million for the prior quarter and $957 million for the second quarter of 2014.  The $57 million increase from the prior quarter was due to increased investment banking revenue, increases in other fee income categories, and higher gains on the sale of securities, partially offset by a decline in mortgage-related income. Compared to the second quarter of 2014, noninterest income decreased $83 million, driven primarily by the gain on sale of RidgeWorth in the second quarter of 2014 and the associated foregone revenue, partially offset by higher mortgage-related and investment banking revenue, along with higher gains on the sale of investment securities.

Investment banking income was $145 million for the current quarter, compared to $97 million in the prior quarter and $119 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The sequential quarter increase was due to strong client-driven performance across most product areas, particularly in syndicated finance, debt capital markets, equity origination, and M&A advisory. Compared to the second quarter of 2014, the increase was due to higher equity origination fees and debt capital markets activity. 

Trading income was $54 million for the current quarter, compared to $55 million for the prior quarter and $47 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The sequential quarter decrease was driven by lower core trading revenue, mostly offset by an increase in mark-to-market valuation gains on the Company’s debt carried at fair value. Compared to the second quarter of 2014, the increase was driven largely by an increase in mark-to-market valuation gains on the Company’s debt carried at fair value, partially offset by lower core trading income.

Mortgage production-related income for the current quarter was $76 million compared to $83 million for the prior quarter and $52 million for the second quarter of 2014.  The sequential quarter decrease was due to a decline in interest rate lock volume and gain-on-sale margins.  The increase compared to the second quarter of 2014 was driven by higher mortgage production volume and a decline in the provision for repurchases, partially offset by a decline in gain-on-sale margins.  Gain-on-sale margins in the current quarter were adversely impacted by higher mortgage interest rates and an increase in loan production from the correspondent channel.  Mortgage production volume increased 27% compared to the prior quarter and 59% compared to the second quarter of 2014.   Applications declined 10% sequentially, entirely driven by lower refinance activity given the increase in interest rates in the second quarter, partially offset by strong growth in purchase applications.

Mortgage servicing income was $30 million for the current quarter, compared to $43 million in the prior quarter and $45 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The decline compared to the prior quarter was driven by higher servicing asset decay, resulting from increased prepayments, and lower net hedge gains.  Compared to the second quarter of 2014, the decline was due to higher decay in the current quarter, partially offset by higher servicing fees as a result of a larger servicing portfolio.  The servicing portfolio was $145 billion at June 30, 2015, compared to $134 billion at June 30, 2014.

Trust and investment management income was $84 million in both the current and prior quarter and $116 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The $32 million decline compared to the prior year was due entirely to foregone revenue resulting from the sale of RidgeWorth in the second quarter of 2014.

Other noninterest income was $52 million for the current quarter, compared to $63 million in the prior quarter and $170 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The sequential quarter decrease was primarily due to an $18 million gain from the sale of legacy affordable housing investments in the prior quarter, partially offset by higher leasing-related income in the current quarter.  Compared to the prior year, the decline was driven by the $105 million pre-tax gain on the sale of RidgeWorth and gains on the sale of government-guaranteed mortgage loans in the second quarter of 2014.

For the six months ended June 30, 2015, noninterest income was $1.7 billion, a decrease of $56 million compared to the first six months of 2014.  The decline was due to the gain on the sale of RidgeWorth and associated foregone revenue, partially offset by higher investment banking and mortgage production income, as well as growth in other fee categories.

Noninterest Expense

Noninterest expense for the current quarter was $1.3 billion, compared to $1.3 billion in the prior quarter and $1.5 billion in the second quarter of 2014.  The $48 million increase relative to the prior quarter was primarily due to $14 million of debt extinguishment costs incurred in the current quarter and discrete recoveries recognized in the prior quarter.  Additionally, a decline in seasonally higher employee compensation in the prior quarter was partially offset by higher incentive compensation in the current quarter related to improved business performance.  Compared to the prior year, the decline in noninterest expense was due to $179 million of specific legacy mortgage-related operating losses recognized in the second quarter of 2014.

Employee compensation and benefits expense was $756 million in the current quarter, compared to $771 million in the prior quarter and $763 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The sequential decrease of $15 million was due to the seasonal decline in employee benefits and FICA taxes, partially offset by higher salaries and incentive compensation driven by improved business performance.  The $7 million decrease from the second quarter of 2014 was largely a result of the sale of RidgeWorth, partially offset by higher incentive compensation.

Operating losses were $16 million in the current quarter, compared to $14 million in the prior quarter, and $218 million in the second quarter of 2014, which included $179 million of net charges related to specific legacy mortgage-related matters.

Outside processing and software expense was $204 million in the current quarter, compared to $189 million in the prior quarter and $181 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The $15 million sequential increase was primarily due to higher business activity levels, as well as timing associated with rendering certain services.  The $23 million increase compared to second quarter of 2014 was due to similar factors that drove the sequential increase, in addition to higher technology and regulatory costs.

Marketing and customer development expense was $34 million in the current quarter, compared to $27 million in the prior quarter and $30 million in the second quarter of 2014.  Compared to the prior quarter, the $7 million increase was driven largely by an increase in advertising expenses as a result of seasonally lower activity in the prior quarter.

FDIC premium and regulatory expense was $35 million in the current quarter, compared to $37 million in the prior quarter, and $40 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The decline in the current quarter compared to both periods was driven by lower FDIC insurance premiums arising from improvements in the Company’s risk profile.

Other noninterest expense was $149 million in the current quarter, compared to $111 million in the prior quarter and $156 million in the second quarter of 2014.  The $38 million sequential increase was driven primarily by the recognition of $14 million of debt extinguishment costs related to wholesale funding repositioning activity in the current quarter and $17 million in discrete recoveries recognized in the prior quarter.  The $7 million decrease compared to the second quarter of 2014 was driven primarily by broad-based declines in other expense categories, partially offset by the debt extinguishment costs recognized in the current quarter.

For the six months ended June 30, 2015, noninterest expense was $2.6 billion compared to $2.9 billion for the first six months of 2014.  The $266 million decrease was driven by the aforementioned decline in operating losses related to legacy mortgage-related matters and affordable housing impairment charges recognized in 2014, the decline in RidgeWorth-related expenses, and the continued focus on expense management.

Income Taxes

For the current quarter, the Company recorded an income tax provision of $202 million, compared to $191 million for the prior quarter and $173 million for the second quarter of 2014.  The effective tax rate for the current quarter was approximately 29%, compared to approximately 31% in the prior quarter, and approximately 30% in the second quarter of 2014.  The effective tax rate in the current quarter was favorably impacted by $15 million in net discrete income tax items.

Balance Sheet

At June 30, 2015, the Company had total assets of $188.9 billion and shareholders’ equity of $23.2 billion, representing 12% of total assets.  Book value per share was $42.46, and tangible book value per share was $30.65, both up compared to December 31, 2014, driven by growth in retained earnings.

Loans

Average performing loans were $132.2 billion for the current quarter, a slight decrease from the prior quarter, and up 2% over the second quarter of 2014.  In May, the Company transferred approximately $1.0 billion of indirect automobile loans to held for sale that were ultimately sold to third parties through a loan securitization in June. The securitization transaction had an immaterial upfront financial impact and was also the primary driver of a $424 million decline in average consumer indirect loans compared to the prior quarter. Additionally, sequential quarter declines in average guaranteed student loans and average CRE loans of $410 million and $329 million, respectively, reflected the impact of loan sales and continued pay down activity during the quarter.  Average consumer direct loans and average nonguaranteed residential mortgages increased $393 million and $375 million, respectively.  Compared to the second quarter of 2014, average performing loans increased $2.4 billion, or 2%, with growth concentrated in C&I and consumer direct loans. This loan growth was partially offset by declines in guaranteed residential mortgage, guaranteed student, and consumer indirect loans driven by the Company’s balance sheet management activities over the previous several quarters.

Deposits

Average client deposits for the current quarter were $142.9 billion, compared to $140.5 billion in the prior quarter and $130.5 billion in the second quarter of 2014.  Sequentially, average client deposits increased 2% due to a $1.2 billion, or 4%, increase in NOW account balances, a $1.0 billion, or 2%, increase in demand deposits, and a $0.3 billion, or 1%, increase in money market account balances. Partially offsetting this growth in lower-cost deposits was a $0.4 billion, or 3%, decline in time deposits.  Compared to the second quarter of 2014, average client deposits increased 9%, driven by increases in lower-cost deposits, partially offset by a $1.7 billion, or 14%, decrease in time deposits.

Capital and Liquidity

The Company’s estimated capital ratios were well above current regulatory requirements with Common Equity Tier 1 and Tier 1 capital ratios at an estimated 9.8% and 10.5%, respectively, at June 30, 2015, on a fully phased-in basis.  The ratios of average total equity to average total assets and tangible equity to tangible assets were 12.34% and 9.37%, respectively, at June 30, 2015.  The Company continues to have substantial available liquidity in the form of its client deposit base, cash, high-quality government-backed securities, and other available funding sources.

During the second quarter, the Company declared a common stock dividend of $0.24 per common share, an increase of $0.04 per share from the prior quarter and the second quarter of 2014.  Additionally, during the current quarter, the Company repurchased $175 million of its outstanding common stock.  Per its 2015 capital plan, the Company currently expects to repurchase approximately $700 million of additional common stock over the next four quarters.

Asset Quality

Total nonperforming assets were $657 million at June 30, 2015, down 6% compared to the prior quarter and 37% compared to the second quarter of 2014.  During the second quarter, the Company transferred $110 million of nonperforming mortgage loans to held for sale.  At June 30, 2015, the percentage of nonperforming loans to total loans was 0.36% compared to 0.46% at March 31, 2015.  Other real estate owned totaled $72 million, a 9% decrease from the prior quarter and a 47% decrease from the second quarter of 2014.

The provision for credit losses was $26 million, a decline of $29 million from the prior quarter and $47 million from the second quarter of 2014, driven by the continued improvement in asset quality, slower loan growth, and lower net charge-offs.  Net charge-offs were $87 million during the current quarter, a decrease of $12 million and $26 million compared to the prior quarter and the second quarter of 2014, respectively.  The ratio of annualized net charge-offs to total average loans was 0.26% during the current quarter, compared to 0.30% during the prior quarter and 0.35% during the second quarter of 2014. 

At June 30, 2015, the allowance for loan and lease losses was $1.8 billion, which represented 1.39% of total loans, a decline of $59 million, or 4 basis points, from March 31, 2015.  The decline was due to the continued improvement in asset quality during the quarter.

Early stage delinquencies declined 6 basis points from the prior quarter to 0.50% at June 30, 2015.  Excluding government-guaranteed loans, early stage delinquencies were 0.25%, down 1 basis point from the prior quarter.

Accruing restructured loans totaled $2.6 billion and nonaccruing restructured loans totaled $185 million at June 30, 2015, of which $2.5 billion were residential loans, $128 million were consumer loans, and $89 million were commercial loans.

OTHER INFORMATION

Business Segment Results

The Company has included business segment financial tables as part of this release. The Company’s business segments include: Consumer Banking and Private Wealth Management, Wholesale Banking, and Mortgage Banking. All revenue in the business segment tables is reported on a fully taxable-equivalent basis. For the business segments, results include net interest income, which is computed using matched-maturity funds transfer pricing. Further, provision for credit losses represents net charge-offs by segment combined with an allocation to the segments of the provision attributable to quarterly changes in the allowance for loan and lease losses and unfunded commitment reserve balances. SunTrust also reports results for Corporate Other, which includes the Treasury department as well as the residual expense associated with operational and support expense allocations. The Corporate Other segment also includes differences created between internal management accounting practices and U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (“U.S. GAAP”) and certain matched-maturity funds transfer pricing credits and charges. A detailed discussion of the business segment results will be included in the Company’s forthcoming Form 10-Q.

Corresponding Financial Tables and Information

Investors are encouraged to review the foregoing summary and discussion of SunTrust’s earnings and financial condition in conjunction with the detailed financial tables and information which SunTrust has also published today and SunTrust’s forthcoming Form 10-Q. Detailed financial tables and other information are also available at investors.suntrust.com.  This information is also included in a current report on Form 8-K furnished with the SEC today.

Conference Call

SunTrust management will host a conference call on July 17, 2015, at 8:00 a.m. (Eastern Time) to discuss the earnings results and business trends. Individuals may call in beginning at 7:45 a.m. (Eastern Time) by dialing 1-888-972-7805 (Passcode: 2Q15). Individuals calling from outside the United States should dial 1-517-308-9091 (Passcode: 2Q15).  A replay of the call will be available approximately one hour after the call ends on July 17, 2015, and will remain available until August 17, 2015, by dialing 1-866-513-4385 (domestic) or 1-203-369-1984 (international). Alternatively, individuals may listen to the live webcast of the presentation by visiting the SunTrust investor relations website at investors.suntrust.com.  Beginning the afternoon of July 17, 2015, listeners may access an archived version of the webcast in the “Events & Presentations” section of the investor relations website. This webcast will be archived and available for one year.

SunTrust Banks, Inc., headquartered in Atlanta, is one of the nation’s largest banking organizations, serving a broad range of consumer, commercial, corporate and institutional clients. The Company operates an extensive branch and ATM network throughout the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic States and a full array of technology-based, 24-hour delivery channels. The Company also serves clients in selected markets nationally. Its primary businesses include deposit, credit, and trust and investment management services. Through various subsidiaries, the Company provides mortgage banking, insurance, brokerage, equipment leasing, and capital markets services. SunTrust’s Internet address is www.suntrust.com.

Important Cautionary Statement About Forward-Looking Statements

This news release includes non-GAAP financial measures to describe SunTrust’s performance. The reconciliations of those measures to GAAP measures are provided within or in the appendix to this news release. In this news release, the Company presents net interest income and net interest margin on a fully taxable-equivalent (“FTE”) basis, and ratios on an annualized basis. The FTE basis adjusts for the tax-favored status of income from certain loans and investments. The Company believes this measure to be the preferred industry measurement of net interest income and provides relevant comparison between taxable and non-taxable amounts.

This news release contains forward-looking statements. Statements regarding potential future share repurchases, and future expected dividends are forward-looking statements. Also, any statement that does not describe historical or current facts is a forward-looking statement. These statements often include the words “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “intends,” “plans,” “forecast,” “goals,” “targets,” “initiatives,” “focus,” “potentially,” “probably,” “projects,” “outlook” or similar expressions or future conditional verbs such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” and “could.” Forward-looking statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of management and on information currently available to management. Our statements speak as of the date hereof, and we do not assume any obligation to update these statements or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those contained in such statements in light of new information or future events.

Forward-looking statements are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Investors are cautioned against placing undue reliance on such statements. Actual results may differ materially from those set forth in the forward looking statements. Future dividends, and the amount of any such dividend, must be declared by our board of directors in the future in their discretion. Also, future share repurchases and the timing of any such repurchase are subject to market conditions and management’s discretion. Additional factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in Part I, “Item 1A. Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014 and in other periodic reports that we file with the SEC.

 

SunTrust Banks, Inc. and Subsidiaries

FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

(Dollars in millions and shares in thousands, except per share data) (Unaudited)



Three Months Ended




Six Months Ended




June 30


%


June 30


%


2015


2014


Change


2015


2014


Change 

EARNINGS & DIVIDENDS












Net income

$483


$399


21%


$912


$804


13%

Net income available to common shareholders

467


387


21%


877


780


12%

Adjusted net income available to common shareholders 1

467


436


7%


877


829


6%

Total revenue – FTE 1, 2                             

2,077


2,201


-6%


4,070


4,231


-4%

Total revenue – FTE excluding gain on sale of asset management subsidiary 1, 2

2,077


2,096


-1%


4,070


4,126


-1%

Net income per average common share               












Diluted 

0.89


0.72


24%


1.67


1.45


15%

Adjusted diluted 1

0.89


0.81


10%


1.67


1.54


8%

Basic

0.90


0.73


23%


1.69


1.47


15%

Dividends paid per common share           

0.24


0.20


20%


0.44


0.30


47%

CONDENSED BALANCE SHEETS 












Selected Average Balances:





Atlantic Power Corporation Completes the Sale of Its Wind Portfolio and Announces Call of Its Senior Unsecured Notes

DEDHAM, Mass., June 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Atlantic Power Corporation (NYSE: AT) (TSX: ATP) (“Atlantic Power” or the “Company”) announced today that it has completed the previously disclosed sale of its wind portfolio to an affiliate of SunEdison, Inc. (NYSE: SUNE) for cash proceeds of approximately $347 million, net of closing adjustments.  The wind portfolio consisted of five operating wind projects in Idaho and Oklahoma with a net ownership by Atlantic Power of 521 megawatts.   

At closing, the Company also deconsolidated approximately $249 million of project debt and $229 million of noncontrolling interest related to tax equity interests at Canadian Hills and the minority ownership interests at Rockland and Canadian Hills.

Atlantic Power also announced today that it has called for redemption all of its outstanding 9.0 percent Senior Unsecured Notes due November 2018.  The outstanding principal amount to be redeemed is approximately $310.9 million.  The Notes will be redeemed in approximately thirty days at a redemption price equal to 104.50 percent of the principal amount thereof, plus accrued interest. 

“The sale of our wind projects and the redemption of our Senior Unsecured Notes achieve two major components of our plan – cost reduction, including interest expense, and debt reduction.  The combined impact is cash flow positive on an annualized basis,” said James J. Moore, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlantic Power.  “These actions also strengthen our balance sheet by reducing our leverage and improve our medium-term debt maturity profile.  We are continuing to explore other opportunities to reshape our remaining corporate debt with a goal of further improving our creditworthiness,” Mr. Moore added.

Net proceeds to Atlantic Power from the wind sale are expected to be approximately $333 million after estimated transaction fees and transaction-related taxes.  Proceeds will be used to fund the redemption of the Senior Unsecured Notes, consistent with the assumptions contained in the Company’s 2015 guidance provided on May 7, 2015.

About Atlantic Power

Atlantic Power owns and operates a diverse fleet of power generation assets in the United States and Canada.  The Company’s power generation projects sell electricity to utilities and other large commercial customers largely under long-term power purchase agreements, which seek to minimize exposure to changes in commodity prices.  Atlantic Power’s power generation projects in operation have an aggregate gross electric generation capacity of approximately 2,137 megawatts (“MW”) in which its aggregate ownership interest is approximately 1,502 MW.  The Company’s current portfolio consists of interests in twenty-three operational power generation projects across nine states in the United States and two provinces in Canada.

Atlantic Power trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol AT and on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol ATP.  For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.atlanticpower.com or contact:

Atlantic Power Corporation 
Amanda Wagemaker, Investor Relations
(617) 977-2700 
info@atlanticpower.com

Copies of certain financial data and other publicly filed documents are filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com or on EDGAR at www.sec.gov/edgar.shtml under “Atlantic Power Corporation” or on the Company’s website.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements

To the extent any statements made in this news release contain information that is not historical, these statements are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and under Canadian securities law (collectively, “forward-looking statements”).

Certain statements in this news release may constitute “forward-looking statements”, which reflect the expectations of management regarding the future growth, results of operations, performance and business prospects and opportunities of the Company and its projects.  These statements, which are based on certain assumptions and describe the Company’s future plans, strategies and expectations, can generally be identified by the use of the words “may,” “will,” “project,” “continue,” “believe,” “intend,” “anticipate,” “expect” or similar expressions that are predictions of or indicate future events or trends and which do not relate solely to present or historical matters.  Examples of such statements in this press release include, but are not limited, to statements with respect to the following:  

  • the sale of the wind projects and redemption of the Senior Unsecured Notes being cash flow positive on an annualized basis;
  • the strengthening of the Company’s balance sheet by reducing its leverage and improving its medium-term debt maturity profile; and
  • the Company’s ability to reshape its remaining corporate debt and improve its creditworthiness.

Forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties, should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results, and will not necessarily be accurate indications of whether or not or the times at or by which such performance or results will be achieved.  Please refer to the factors discussed under “Risk Factors” and “Forward-Looking Information” in the Company’s periodic reports as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time for a detailed discussion of the risks and uncertainties affecting the Company, including, without limitation, the Company’s ability to evaluate and/or implement potential options, including asset sales or joint ventures, if the valuation of a particular asset or assets is compelling, to raise additional capital for growth and/or potential debt reduction.  Although the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are based upon what are believed to be reasonable assumptions, investors cannot be assured that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements, and the differences may be material.  These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release and, except as expressly required by applicable law, the Company assumes no obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances.  The financial outlook information contained in this news release is presented to provide readers with guidance on the cash distributions expected to be received by the Company and to give readers a better understanding of the Company’s ability to pay its current level of distributions into the future.  The Company’s ability to achieve its longer-term goals, including those described in this news release, is based on significant assumptions relating to and including, among other things, the general conditions of the markets in which it operates, revenues, internal and external growth opportunities, its ability to sell assets at favorable prices or at all and general financial market and interest rate conditions.  The Company’s actual results may differ, possibly materially and adversely, from these goals. Readers are cautioned that such information may not be appropriate for other purposes.

SOURCE Atlantic Power Corporation

RELATED LINKS
http://www.atlanticpower.com

Canadian banks’ strong profits buoyed by rising student debt

OTTAWA, June 2, 2015 /CNW/ - As Canada’s ‘Big 6′ banks all reported stronger-than-expected profits last week, newly examined data from Statistics Canada reveals a massive upswing in privately held debt among post-secondary graduates. In only ten years, while bachelor’s degree graduates saw a 5.2 percent increase in public debt, private debt for that group shot up by 53 percent.

“As the upfront costs of post-secondary education continue to rise, more Canadians must rely on debt to pursue their studies,” said Jessica McCormick, National Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. “Higher rates of private borrowing—and the associated interest—mean banks are seeing higher profits on the backs of students.”

Private debt levels for PhD. and Bachelor’s degree holders have jumped between four and 11.5 percent each year between 2000 and 2010. If the same standards used by the Bank of Canada for household debt are applied to private student debt—where annual growth above four percent raises concerns—then there is justifiable cause to sound the alarm. The Canada Student Loans Program expects that over 40 percent of borrowers will need more than the maximum available loans next year.

“Each year, as more students take out the maximum available public loans, they turn to private sources such as bank loans, lines of credit, and credit cards to make ends meet,” added McCormick. “Similar to high household debt, high student debt slows recovery and keeps Canadian graduates from participating fully in the economy.”

A more detailed analysis is available on the Federation’s website:
cfs-fcee.ca/research-policy/fact-sheets-and-advisories

The Canadian Federation of Students is Canada’s largest student organisation, uniting more than one-half million students across Canada. The Canadian Federation of Students and its predecessor organisations have represented students in Canada since 1927.

 

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students

RELATED LINKS
http://www.cfs-fcee.ca

At-risk Canadians drawn into cycle of debt

KITCHENER, ON, May 4, 2015 /CNW/ – A new “Joe Debtor” study conducted by Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc. reveals that, for a core group of Canadians, debt has become a survival tool.

“While the rate of personal insolvencies has fallen in recent years, certain at-risk groups continue to struggle to stay out of debt,” said Douglas Hoyes, a trustee with Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc. “Our study of the average insolvent debtor shows that single parents, students and seniors make up an increasing share of insolvent debtors.”

“Struggling Canadians are susceptible to poor credit choices and these choices are increasing their risk of filing bankruptcy” cautioned Ted Michalos, a trustee with Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.  “While credit card debt declined sharply, payday loans and “fast cash” loans are an increasing problem, particularly for seniors; and student loan repayment remains an issue, especially for women.” 

  • Seniors at risk & using payday loans: Debtors aged 60 and older carry the most debt of all age groups, with a total unsecured debt of over $69,000, and almost half of that debt is credit card debt. Moreover, seniors had the highest payday loan debt ($3,693) of all age groups.
  • Parenting alone: Almost 1 in 5 insolvent debtors are lone parents and 3 out of 4 lone parents who become insolvent are female. While they carry less credit card debt than the average debtor, they struggle with fixed repayment debt (like car loans and student loans), and they are more likely to have debt in collections as compared to other debtors.
  • Massive student debt: 13% of debtors have a student loan, up 4.3%; and 60% are female. Female student debtors face an elevated risk of filing insolvency. Jane Student owed $14,748 on student loans at the time of filing, 19% more than males. Although female student debtors earn slightly more than male debtors, they are more likely to have unstable income making it difficult to remain on top of student loan repayment.
  • Credit card debt down: In good news, total unsecured debt levels decreased by 2% over the last two years. Credit card debt has declined steadily since 2010, and was down 12% from two years ago, leading to fewer largely credit card driven insolvencies.
  • Dangerous payday loan usage growing: Overuse of payday loan debt is on the rise. 18% of insolvent debtors have at least one payday loan, compared to 12% two years ago.  The average total payday loan debt increased 12% to $2,749, or 113% of their monthly income. With an average income 6% above that of the typical Joe Debtor, middle income earners, not low income earners, are most likely to use payday loans to excess.
  • Fast cash loans adding up: 5% of debtors have “fast cash” instalment loans, compared to just 1% two years ago, and average loans increased from $2,199 to $3,608. 78% of these borrowers also had a payday loan, so instead of an alternative to payday loans, these easy instalment loans are one more source of cash for financially struggling individuals. 9% of seniors are using payday loans and 62% of seniors with a payday loan were retired, with 35% of all senior payday loan borrowers over the age of 70.
  • Vehicle cost driving debt: Insolvent debtors were more significantly in debt due to vehicle financing than in our previous study. 46% of all vehicles listed were encumbered (up from 43%), with the average secured vehicle loan increasing by 12% from two years ago to $11,358.
  • Debt costs drowning debtors: Joe Debtor pays a blended interest rate of 19%, or approximately $889 per month in interest, an amount equal to 37% of his take-home pay.  High debt service costs cause people to borrow to make minimum payments, starting a downward cycle of higher debt and higher debt service costs. The average payday loan debtor is paying a blended debt servicing cost of more than 56% on his total unsecured debt of $35,799, or almost $1,700 a month.  That is the primary reason why the average payday lender owes a total of 3.5 payday loans and can easily accumulate double digit loans.

 

“For many Canadians facing financial problems, much of their debt is incurred not to fund spending, but to service other debt and cover ongoing interest payments,” says Doug Hoyes. “This is a cycle of debt that ultimately leads to insolvency.”

A complete copy of our Joe Debtor: Marginalized by Debt research study, can be found at www.hoyes.com/press/joe-debtor/.

About Hoyes, Michalos & Associates, Inc.

Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc., a consumer proposal and trustee in bankruptcy firm with offices throughout Ontario, helps people in financial difficulty.  Further information is available at www.hoyes.com

KEY SURVEY FINDINGS – JOE DEBTOR

Average Unsecured Debt $56,545


Senior Debtor (60+)


Unsecured Debt

$69,031


Male

58%


Female

42%


Payday Loan

$3,693


Easy Instalment Loan

$3,749


Lone Parent Debtor


Unsecured Debt

$52,928


Male

25%


Female

75%


Payday Loan

$2,638


Easy Instalment Loan

$3,412


Student Debtor


Unsecured Debt

$48,414


Student Debt

$13,818


Male (Student Debt)

40% ($12,431)


Female (Student Debt)

60% ($14,748)


Payday Loan

$2,461


Easy Instalment Loan

$2,894


Payday Loans


Average Payday Debt

$2,749


Number Loans

3.5


Average Loan Size

$794


Easy Instalment Loans


Average Total Debt

$3,608


Average Loan Size

$3,346

 

More data available at:
http://www.hoyes.com/press/joe-debtor/

Additional graphs and images available here:
http://www.hoyes.com/press/joe-debtor/media-graphics/

SOURCE Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.

RELATED LINKS
http://www.hoyes.com

FICO Makes FICO® Scores Available to Financially Struggling Consumers Through Non-Profit Credit and Financial Counselors

SAN JOSE, Calif., April 21, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – FICO (NYSE: FICO), the predictive analytics and decision management software company, today announced that its popular FICO® Score Open Access program is expanding to provide FICO® Scores to approximately one million consumers annually who are in need of credit and financial guidance through qualified non-profit credit counselors and participating government entities.  FICO® Score Open Access, launched by FICO in November of 2013, is enabling tens of millions of Americans to regularly receive – at no cost – the actual FICO® Scores purchased and used by lenders.

FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling, as the program expansion is called, has been designed to aid consumers who have credit management problems by providing FICO® Scores along with credit education material that helps consumers understand credit scoring and learn about responsible financial health management.  At the same time Experian, one of FICO’s credit bureau partners, has agreed to allow qualified credit counselors to share Experian credit reports with their clients – providing important additional information to consumers who are struggling financially. 

“The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) first drew our attention to financial counselors’ need to share credit scores with consumers in early 2014 as part of the CFPB’s efforts to empower consumers,” said Jim Wehmann, FICO’s executive vice president for Scores. “Because of FICO’s longstanding commitment to consumer financial education, when the CFPB approached us about enabling credit and financial counselors to share FICO Scores they purchase with their clients, we recognized the importance of working with our data partners to make it happen. The popular FICO Score Open Access program has now been extended to approximately one million people who seek assistance each year though these worthy organizations. We consider this a major milestone in our effort to ensure that all Americans have convenient and free access to their FICO Scores.”

“Experian is proud to join FICO and the nation’s credit counselors to lend our support through this important program for people experiencing financial difficulty,” said Genevieve Juillard, president of Experian Consumer Information Services. “It is our mission to be a champion of the consumer, and as the leading provider of consumer credit education and empowerment tools, we are proud to offer Experian’s credit reports in conjunction with the FICO Score to help struggling borrowers.”

“In today’s economy, a good credit history is essential for individuals and families to get and stay ahead,” said Sarah Chenven, director of Programs and Strategic Initiatives at Credit Builders Alliance. “The ability to help underserved consumers in particular access their FICO Scores — and provide educational resources that identify the underlying financial behavior driving those scores — will strengthen nonprofit counselors’ and coaches’ toolkits, and may enhance their clients’ outcomes.”

Eligible credit and financial counseling organizations may participate in the FICO® Score Open Access for Credit & Financial Counseling program in coordination with membership associations, including the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies and Credit Builders Alliance, and through government and non-government entities, including the Local Initiatives Support Corporation. For more information, financial counseling organizations may visit the FICO Community for credit and financial counseling, a portal created specifically for this program with the support of credit and financial counseling organizations, including Money Management International, Capstone Community Action, GreenPath, and Justine PETERSEN.

The FICO® Score is the score lenders use. FICO is the leader in credit risk scoring, and the FICO® Score is the standard measure of consumer credit risk. Businesses bought more than 10 billion FICO® Scores last year, and the scores are used in 90 percent of consumer lending decisions in the US.  All FICO® Scores based on each of the three major credit bureaus are eligible to be included in this program.

About FICO
FICO (NYSE: FICO) is a leading analytics software company, helping businesses in 90+ countries make better decisions that drive higher levels of growth, profitability and customer satisfaction. The company’s groundbreaking use of Big Data and mathematical algorithms to predict consumer behavior has transformed entire industries. FICO provides analytics software and tools used across multiple industries to manage risk, fight fraud, build more profitable customer relationships, optimize operations and meet strict government regulations. Many of our products reach industry-wide adoption. These include the FICO® Score, the standard measure of consumer credit risk in the United States. FICO solutions leverage open-source standards and cloud computing to maximize flexibility, speed deployment and reduce costs. The company also helps millions of people manage their personal credit health.

FICO: Make every decision count™. Learn more at www.fico.com.

For FICO news and media resources, visit www.fico.com/news.

FICO and “Make every decision count” are trademarks or registered trademarks of Fair Isaac Corporation in the United States and in other countries.

 

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111010/CG83314LOGO

 

SOURCE FICO

RELATED LINKS
http://www.fico.com

BB&T Receives Financial Education Innovation Award

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., April 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Nasdaq and EverFi presented BB&T with the Innovation in Financial Education Award, which recognizes significant efforts to improve the financial capability of young Americans. Twenty-five financial institutions were honored with this distinction at a ceremony hosted Tuesday, April 14, at Nasdaq’s Marketsite headquarters in New York City.

Honorees were selected based on a set of criteria that included the scale and reach of their financial education initiatives, the duration of their commitment, and unique employee volunteering activities that supplement their programs.

“The institutions we’re recognizing here today have led exceptional efforts to rethink how financial education is taught in our nation’s schools,” said EverFi Founder and CEO Tom Davidson. “Our global competitiveness is dependent on the next generation understanding how the economy works and how to achieve financial security in their lives. We are grateful to the organizations that are helping pave a brighter future for students today.”

As young adults face increasingly complex financial decisions, BB&T is committed to providing students with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed. BB&T has partnered with EverFi to bring the financial education program to local students at no cost to schools or taxpayers through its BB&T Financial Foundations program and has reached more than 185,000 students since 2010. The web-based program uses the latest in new media technology – simulations, gaming and adaptive-pathing – to bring complex financial concepts to life for today’s digital generation.

A FINRA-funded study released in February 2015 found students who received rigorous financial education in high school saw increased credit scores and decreased chance of credit delinquency as young adults, compared to their peers who did not receive financial education. Data collected from nearly 72,000 students who completed the BB&T Financial Foundations program in the 2013-2014 academic year revealed students’ understanding of credit scores increased by an average 30 percent after interacting with the curriculum.

Administered by teachers in a classroom setting, the web-based course offers more than six hours of programming on a variety of financial topics including credit scores, insurance, credit cards, student loans, mortgages, taxes, stocks, savings, 401(k)’s and other critical concepts that map to national financial literacy standards. The platform uniquely tracks the progress and performance of every student.

About BB&T
BB&T is one of the largest financial services holding companies in the U.S. with $186.8 billion in assets and market capitalization of $28 billion, as of Dec. 31, 2014. Based in Winston-Salem, N.C., the company operates 1,839 financial centers in 12 states and Washington, D.C., and offers a full range of consumer and commercial banking, securities brokerage, asset management, mortgage and insurance products and services. A Fortune 500 company, BB&T is consistently recognized for outstanding client satisfaction by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Greenwich Associates and others. More information about BB&T and its full line of products and services is available at 
BBT.com.

About NASDAQ
Nasdaq is a leading provider of trading, clearing, exchange technology, listing, information and public company services across six continents. Through its diverse portfolio of solutions, Nasdaq enables customers to plan, optimize and execute their business vision with confidence, using proven technologies that provide transparency and insight for navigating today’s global capital markets. As the creator of the world’s first electronic stock market, its technology powers more than 70 marketplaces in 50 countries, and 1 in 10 of the world’s securities transactions. Nasdaq is home to more than 3,500 listed companies with a market value of over $9.1 trillion and more than 10,000 corporate clients. To learn more, visit www.nasdaq.com/ambition or www.business.nasdaq.com.

About EverFi
EverFi, Inc., is the leading education technology company focused on teaching, assessing, and certifying K-12 and college students in the critical skills they need for life. The company teams with major corporations and foundations to provide the programs at no cost to K-12 schools. Some of America’s leading CEOs and venture capital firms are EverFi investors including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Twitter founder Evan Williams, and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt.  Learn more at everfi.com.

SOURCE BB&T Corporation

RELATED LINKS
http://www.bbt.com

Credit Repair Companies – Can You Afford to Trust Them?

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA — In the worst-case scenario, a “credit repair company” could be a “fly by night operator,” who will meet the intended victim at any place but their office, take their money and never be seen again. Still there are other companies who “help” by deleting a few adverse credit entries in a credit report using generally known techniques of dispute but leaving most of the negative entries just as bad off as before they started. Often times this can be worse, leaving the client financially poorer and not at all accomplishing the goal of achieving a good credit rating or at the very least resolving their credit card debt.
 
Even with the best of intentions, in most cases there is not much that the credit repair firm can do, due to their limited knowledge and resources for handling difficult bad credit issues. Most of these companies only know how to, as one credit repair practitioner put it, “We bombard the credit bureaus with letters.” They don’t have a clue as to proper procedure to really address an issue to resolve it, so instead, they antagonize the credit bureaus, which is why so many of these companies give anyone dealing with credit issues a bad name; regardless of how much knowledge or integrity they demonstrate.
 
The good news is that there is a professional and meticulous company that can handle all types of credit debt problems, with the knowledge and experience of knowing how to handle those issues in a manner consistent with the needs of the client. This firm is Frederick David & Associates.
 
The firm’s president, Frederick David, is a credit expert, an Arbitrator as well as a Certified Civil Court Mediator. He doesn’t just read a credit report, he does a thorough credit check by analyzing each entry, discusses with the client what is being reported, and determines the best course of action to take, to look into and resolve any issue affecting their good credit that is lowering their credit scores. This firm does have the experience and knowledge of how to handle all types of negative credit history concerns.
 
Frederick David’s first question to a new client is, “What brings you to me at this time?” What is it that leads you to want to restore your credit now? The credit restoration process now has a focus, to help that person restore their credit profile so they can achieve their goals. Mr. David also provides them with additional credit help through credit counseling, to help them maintain their good credit rating after the adverse credit issues have been resolved.
 
Being a well-organized professional, Frederick David keeps an impressive file of clients’ letters thanking him for the work he has done in their behalf, and speaking of the home they have now qualified for, or the car they have just purchased.

Frederick David & Associates also handles issues for clients facing the possibility of Foreclosure, including Short Sale, Loan Modification, and other alternatives to Foreclosure.

For more information on credit reporting issues call Mr. David at (954) 565-9300, e-mail him or visit the company website at http://fdmediation.com/ or ask for an appointment to see him in Broward County at 3471 N. Federal Highway, Suite 510, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33306.

Six Tips to Help Manage Debt – and Maintain Financial Health

CLEVELAND, March 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Financial health doesn’t require living debt free. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, there is nothing wrong with having debt as long as you manage your debt responsibly and are not overwhelmed by the amount of debt you’ve accrued.

The tipping point varies when it comes to managing debt and having debt manage you. Generally speaking, however, it’s best to have a low debt to income ratio, or DTI. DTI refers to the percentage of debt – your total monthly loan payment – to your monthly income before taxes.  You should aim to keep your DTI at 40 percent or less, particularly if you want to qualify for a loan with low interest rates. 

Feel as if you’ve past your personal debt tipping point? KeyBank has some suggestions to help you regain your balance:

  1. Scrutinize your spending habits, focusing on what you buy because you want it, and not because you need it. Consider how often you use credit to buy those extras, and whether you should reserve credit cards for major, significant purchases you can pay off promptly.
  2. Create a budget, and stick to it. Consider tapping online and mobile banking  tools that make it easy to check account balances and transactions.  
  3. Regain control of credit card debt with a debt elimination plan so you make steady progress toward reducing card debt. Tackle your high interest cards or your low balance cards and pay as much as you can on those cards while making minimum payments on other, lower interest or higher balance cards.
  4. Consider debt consolidation and talk to your banker about your specific situation; consolidation might increase the amount of time and money spent to eliminate debt. Once you’re comfortable with your credit card account balances, pick one card to cover unexpected necessary expenses and pay cash or use your debit card for the rest.
  5. Build an emergency fund so you can choose between tapping credit or your emergency fund for unexpected major expenses. Allocate extra income – a bonus or pay increase – toward eliminating debt or boosting your emergency fund.
  6. Be patient.  Regaining control over debt takes time. But the wait is worth it.

This material is presented for informational purposes only and should not be construed as individual tax or financial advice. Please consult with legal, tax and/or financial advisors. KeyBank does not provide legal advice.

About KeyCorp

Key traces its history back more than 160 years and is headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. One of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies, Key has assets of approximately $93 billion. Key (NYSE: KEY) provides deposit, lending, cash management and investment services to individuals, small and medium-sized business under the name KeyBank National Association. Key also provides a broad range of sophisticated corporate and investment banking products, such as merger and acquisition advice, public and private debt and equity, syndications and derivatives to middle market companies in selected industries throughout the United States under the KeyBanc Capital Markets trade name.

For more information about Key, visit www.key.com, or follow Key on Twitter at @KeyBank_News and @KeyBank_Thrive.

Banking products and services are offered by KeyBank National Association. Key.com is a federally registered service mark of KeyCorp. ©2015 KeyCorp. KeyBank is Member FDIC

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150323/183721LOGO

SOURCE KeyCorp

RELATED LINKS
http://www.key.com

Nelnet Reports Fourth Quarter 2014 Results

LINCOLN, Neb., Feb. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – Nelnet (NYSE: NNI) today reported GAAP net income of $73.6 million, or $1.59 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with GAAP net income of $70.5 million, or $1.52 per share, for the same period a year ago.

Excluding derivative market value and foreign currency adjustments, net income was $74.3 million, or $1.60 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with $70.1 million, or $1.51 per share, for the same period in 2013.  The company reported an expense from derivative market value and foreign currency adjustments of $0.7 million after tax, or $0.01 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with income of $0.5 million after tax, or $0.01 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2013.

“We achieved record earnings in 2014 and are positioned well for success this year,” said Jeff Noordhoek, chief executive officer of Nelnet.  “Our focus continues to be on enhancing our customer experiences, growing in and around our servicing and payment processing businesses, and deploying capital effectively. In 2015, we expect to be able to make investments in diversification and private education loan partnerships, as well as continuing to find federal student loan portfolios to acquire.”

Nelnet operates three primary business segments, earning interest income on student loans in its Asset Generation and Management operating segment, and fee-based revenue in its Student Loan and Guaranty Servicing and Tuition Payment Processing and Campus Commerce operating segments.

The increase in earnings for the fourth quarter of 2014 compared with the same period in 2013 was due to an increase in net interest income earned from the company’s student loan portfolio and an increase in income from repurchases of the company’s debt.  This increase was partially offset by the expected decrease in net income from the company’s Student Loan and Guaranty Servicing operating segment and a decrease in income from gains on investments and investment advisory fees.

Asset Generation and Management

Historically low interest rates continue to provide the opportunity for the company to generate substantial near-term value and cash flow from its student loan portfolio.  For the fourth quarter of 2014, Nelnet reported net interest income of $112.5 million, compared with $108.7 million for the same period a year ago.  Net interest income included $49.2 million and $38.8 million of fixed rate floor income, net of settlements on derivatives, in the fourth quarters of 2014 and 2013, respectively.

In 2014, Nelnet purchased $6.1 billion of student loans, bringing its total student loan portfolio to $28.0 billion as of December 31, 2014.

The company intends to use its strong liquidity position to capitalize on market opportunities to acquire additional legacy Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) and private education loans.

On January 29, 2015, the company acquired a $582.8 million portfolio of FFELP loans.  In addition, Nelnet has entered into agreements to purchase private education loans originated from certain forward-flow loan partners.

Student Loan and Guaranty Servicing

Under the company’s servicing contract with the U.S. Department of Education (Department), the volume of student loans serviced and the number of borrowers serviced increased 21 percent and 11 percent, respectively, as of December 31, 2014, when compared with the end of 2013. The company was servicing $133.6 billion of loans for 5.9 million borrowers on behalf of the Department as of December 31, 2014, compared with $110.5 billion of loans for 5.3 million borrowers as of December 31, 2013. Revenue from this contract increased 12 percent to $32.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, up from $28.9 million for the same period a year ago.

The growth in government servicing revenue partially offset the continued expected run off of the company’s commercial servicing portfolio and the impact of federal legislative changes that reduced the revenue earned by guaranty agencies for collections. As a result of these changes and run-off, total revenue from the company’s Student Loan and Guaranty Servicing segment decreased 10 percent, or $6.6 million, to $56.5 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, from $63.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2013. As the volume of loans serviced under the Department servicing contract continues to grow and loans serviced under the legacy commercial programs continue to run off, the company expects the operating margins to tighten.

Tuition Payment Processing and Campus Commerce

For the fourth quarter of 2014, revenue from the company’s Tuition Payment Processing and Campus Commerce segment was $24.7 million, an increase of $5.7 million, or 30 percent, from the same period in 2013.  The increase in revenue was the result of the acquisition of RenWeb in June 2014, in addition to growth in managed tuition payment plans, campus commerce transaction volume, and new school customers.  Operating margin for this segment decreased in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with the same period in 2013, due to lower margins on new services and the amortization of intangible assets from the acquisition of RenWeb.  Amortization of intangible assets in this segment was $2.1 million and $0.8 million for the fourth quarters of 2014 and 2013, respectively.

Operating Expenses

The company reported consolidated operating expenses of $114.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with $111.6 million for the same period in 2013.

Year End Results

GAAP net income for the year ended December 31, 2014 was $307.6 million, or $6.62 per share, compared with GAAP net income of $302.7 million or $6.50 per share, for 2013.  Excluding derivative market value and foreign currency adjustments, net income in 2014 was $284.2 million, or $6.12 per share, compared with $272.5 million, or $5.85 per share, for 2013.  The derivative market value and foreign currency adjustments were income of $23.4 million, or $0.50 per share, during 2014, compared with income of $30.1 million, or $0.65 per share, for 2013.

Non-GAAP Performance Measures

The company provides additional non-GAAP financial information related to specific items management believes to be important in the evaluation of its operating results, including specifically, the impact of unrealized gains and losses resulting from changes in fair values of derivative instruments which do not qualify for “hedge treatment” under GAAP and foreign currency transaction gains or losses resulting from the re-measurement of the company’s Euro-denominated bonds to U.S. dollars.  The company believes these point in time estimates of asset and liability values related to financial instruments that are subject to interest and currency rate fluctuations, and items whose timing and/or amount cannot be reasonably estimated in advance, affect the period to period comparability of the results of the company’s fundamental business operations on a recurring basis.  Accordingly, the company provides operating results excluding these items for comparability purposes.

Forward-looking and Cautionary Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws.  These statements are based on management’s current expectations as of the date of this release and are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results or performance to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks include, among others, risks related to the company’s student loan portfolio such as interest rate basis and repricing risk, the use of derivatives to manage exposure to interest rate fluctuations, and the uncertain nature of expected benefits from recent FFELP loan purchases and initiatives to purchase additional FFELP and private education loans; the company’s funding requirements to satisfy asset financing needs; risks related to the company’s ability to maintain and increase volumes under the company’s loan servicing contract with the Department to service federally owned student loans; changes in the educational credit and services marketplace resulting from changes in applicable laws, regulations, and government programs and budgets; risks related to the recent reduction in government payments to guaranty agencies to rehabilitate defaulted FFELP loans and services in support of those activities; and changes in general economic and credit market conditions. For more information, see the “Risk Factors” sections and other cautionary discussions of risks and uncertainties included in documents filed or furnished by the company with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the cautionary information about forward-looking statements contained in the company’s supplemental financial information for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2014.  All forward-looking statements in this release are as of the date of this release. Although the company may from time to time voluntarily update or revise its forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or changes in the company’s expectations, the company disclaims any commitment to do so except as required by securities laws.

 

Consolidated Statements of Income

(Dollars in thousands, except share data)

(unaudited)



Three months ended


Year ended


December 31,
 2014


September 30,
 2014


December 31,
 2013


December 31,
2014


December 31,
2013

Interest income:















Loan interest

$

182,783



187,862



165,865



703,007



638,142


Investment interest

1,770



1,562



2,006



6,793



6,668


Total interest income

184,553



189,424



167,871



709,800



644,810


Interest expense:















Interest on bonds and notes payable

72,061



71,937



59,135



273,237



230,935


Net interest income

112,492



117,487



108,736



436,563



413,875


Less provision for loan losses

3,500



2,000



3,500



9,500



18,500


Net interest income after provision for loan losses

108,992



115,487



105,236



427,063



395,375


Other income (expense):















Loan and guaranty servicing revenue

56,538



52,659



63,167



240,414



243,428


Tuition payment processing, school information, and campus commerce revenue

24,688



26,399



18,988



98,156



80,682


Enrollment services revenue

17,791



22,936



21,735



82,883



98,078


Other income

12,906



7,650



15,981



54,002



46,298


Gain on sale of loans and debt repurchases, net

3,594





799



3,651



11,699


Derivative settlements, net

(4,566)



(4,834)



(6,407)



(21,843)



(29,636)


Derivative market value and foreign currency adjustments, net

(1,082)



29,037



752



37,703



48,593


Total other income

109,869



133,847



115,015



494,966



499,142


Operating expenses:















Salaries and benefits

60,609



61,098



52,120



228,079



196,169


Cost to provide enrollment services

11,343



14,178



13,864



53,307



64,961


Depreciation and amortization

5,644



5,493



5,274



21,134



18,311


Other

37,310



36,676



40,349



149,990



149,542


Total operating expenses

114,906



117,445



111,607



452,510



428,983


Income before income taxes

103,955



131,889



108,644



469,519



465,534


Income tax expense

30,036



46,513



37,556



160,238



161,193


Net income

73,919



85,376



71,088



309,281



304,341


Net income attributable to noncontrolling interest

308



157



568



1,671



1,669


Net income attributable to Nelnet, Inc.

$

73,611



85,219



70,520



307,610



302,672


Earnings per common share:















Net income attributable to Nelnet, Inc. shareholders – basic and diluted

$

1.59



1.84



1.52



6.62



6.50


Weighted average common shares outstanding -    basic and diluted

46,390,402



46,432,680



46,502,028



46,469,615



46,570,314


 

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets

(Dollars in thousands)

(unaudited)








As of


As of


As of


December 31, 2014


September 30, 2014


December 31, 2013

Assets:








Student loans receivable, net

$

28,005,195



28,701,344



25,907,589


Cash, cash equivalents, and investments

279,604



222,359



255,307


Restricted cash and investments

968,928



940,343



902,699


Goodwill and intangible assets, net

168,782



169,076



123,250


Other assets

675,634



665,527



582,004


Total assets

$

30,098,143



30,698,649



27,770,849


Liabilities:









Bonds and notes payable

$

28,027,350



28,737,456



25,955,289


Other liabilities

345,115



303,636



371,570


Total liabilities

28,372,465



29,041,092



26,326,859


Equity:









Total Nelnet, Inc. shareholders’ equity

1,725,448



1,657,289



1,443,662


Noncontrolling interest

230



268



328


Total equity

1,725,678



1,657,557



1,443,990


Total liabilities and equity

$

30,098,143



30,698,649



27,770,849


 

(code #: nnif)

SOURCE Nelnet

RELATED LINKS
http://www.nelnet.com