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Posted February 4, 2009 | Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily
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United Bank won't seek federal funds

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The holding company for United Bank has elected not to participate in a government capital infusion plan for financial institutions.

United Bankshares Inc. had been approved to receive up to $197 million under the Treasury’s Capital Purchase Program.

In a statement, Chairman and CEO Richard M. Adams says the program’s “restrictions on possible future dividend increases, the dilution of earnings, and the uncertainty surrounding future requirements” outweighed its benefits.

The company reported solid fourth-quarter and full-year 2008 results, including an increase of about $220 million in loans over the past 12 months, in part from its 2007 purchase of Premier Community Bankshares.

United’s year-over-year earnings for the fourth quarter were relatively flat at $16.5 million, or 37 cents a share. For all of 2008, earnings were $87 million, or $2 a share, compared to $90.7 million, or $2.15 a share, in 2007.

Increases in income from interest-bearing accounts were mostly offset by a larger provision for credit losses due to nonperforming assets, loan charge-offs and other inherent risk factors, the company said. For the quarter ended Dec. 31, the company’s allowance for credit losses was $12.2 million, an increase of almost $10 million over the same quarter in 2007. For the full year, the increase was nearly $20 million.

— Daily Staff Report

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