First Mariner Bancorp reports third quarter loss

Baltimore-based First Mariner Bancorp continues to lose money, although the $4.6 million loss in the third quarter is significantly less than a year ago, the company reported Thursday.

The parent company of 1st Mariner Bank reported a loss of 26 cents per share for the quarter. In third quarter last year, First Mariner lost $12.9 million or $2.01 per share.

First Mariner is under orders by regulators to boost its capital. Chairman and chief executive Edwin F. Hale Sr. said capital ratios at the end of the third quarter were higher than a year ago, and the company is evaluating options to raise them further.

Total revenue in the quarter reached $19.3 million, a 37 percent increase over last year. Historically low interest rates created a flurry of mortgage refinancing and generated $8.8 million in revenue, the company said.

Delinquencies also have fallen to their lowest level in four years. The company set aside $9.8 million for loan losses, more than three times the amount from a year ago. Assets fell 5 percent from last year to $1.3 billion. Outstanding loans fell 7 percent to $832.9 million, while deposits rose 3 percent to $1.1 billion.

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