HTLF reports strong quarter, positive future outlook

Officials for a Dubuque-headquartered financial institution on Monday celebrated an “outstanding” second quarter that they said provides significant momentum going forward.

Officials for HTLF, formerly known as Heartland Financial USA, reported continued loan, deposit and asset growth for the year so far as of close of the quarter that ended June 30.

“We have momentum,” Bruce Lee, president and CEO of HTLF, said Monday during a quarterly earnings conference call. “We’re executing our strategies, which are delivering excellent results.”

The company reported total assets of $19.7 billion at the end of the quarter, up 2% from $19.3 billion at the end of 2021. Total deposits increased to a record $17.2 billion, up from $16.4 billion at the close of 2021 and marking the 13th consecutive quarter of deposit growth. Organic loan growth increased by $552 million.

“We really had solid growth across our entire footprint,” Lee said. “For the first time since I can remember, … all 11 of our banks had organic growth.”

HTLF’s net income for the recently completed quarter was $49.9 million, down 16% from $59.6 million in the same quarter last year.

Lee and Chief Financial Officer Bryan McKeag said that decrease could be traced back to the releasing of reserves and the end of the federal Paycheck Protection Program last year that provided loans to businesses to help retain employees earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic.

McKeag said that when accounting for those factors, HTLF had a better quarter than the one a year prior.

“We hit on all cylinders, and credit remains really strong,” he told the Telegraph Herald following the conference call.

Lee said the most recent quarter marked the fifth in a row of solid loan growth and that HTLF has benefited from increasing interest rates and also has worked to control expenses.

Lee also provided an update on HTLF’s plan to consolidate the company’s 11 bank charters. The company’s board previously approved consolidating the charters into one based in Colorado. The move aims to improve operating efficiency and capacity and is expected to save HTLF $20 million annually when consolidation is completed.

HTLF officials executed the first consolidation last month with Colorado-based Citywide Banks, which now is operating as a division of HTLF Bank. Four more banks are expected to convert this year, with an aim to complete the consolidation by late 2023.

Looking forward, Lee said HTLF’s customers feel good about the economy through 2022. McKeag said company leaders believe revenue will continue to increase going forward.

“We believe that we’ve got the momentum, that revenue will continue to improve, and we think the bottom line will continue to improve as well,” McKeag said.