Troubled regional bank First Republic
The deposit flight at First Republic was worse than Wall Street expected, with analysts estimating the figure at the end of the first quarter to be about $145 billion, according to the consensus estimate from FactSet’s StreetAccount. Analysts’ deposit estimates ranged from $100 billion to $206 billion, according to FactSet.
First Republic said Monday that deposit flows have since stabilized.
“Deposit activity began to stabilize beginning the week of March 27, 2023, and has remained stable through Friday, April 21, 2023. Total deposits were $102.7 billion as of April 21, 2023, down only 1.7% from March 31, 2023, primarily reflecting seasonal client tax payments that occur each April,” the release said.
The deposit figure for the end of March included $30 billion in time deposits from 11 larger banks that was announced on March 16 in an attempt to stabilize the broader banking system. If those deposits were excluded, First Republic’s deposits would have fallen by more than 50%.
“I would also like to reiterate our appreciation for the group of America’s largest banks who placed $30 billion in uninsured deposits with us, as well as for our state and federal regulators who have continued to provide us with expert support,” CEO Michael Roffler said on the earnings call.
Roffler also said that First Republic has maintained over 97% of “client relationships” from the start of the quarter despite the outflows. He did not provide further detail on that point, and took no questions on the call.
As part of its earnings release, First Republic announced that it was cutting expenses through reductions in executive compensation, condensing office space and cutting head count by 20% to 25% in the second quarter.
First Republic also said in the release it is “pursuing strategic options to expedite its progress while reinforcing its capital position.” The shares, which jumped 12% during regular trading, were off about 20% in extended trading.
The firm did beat Wall Street estimates on the top and bottom lines. The bank reported $1.23 in earnings per share on $1.21 billion of revenue. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv had penciled in 85 cents of earnings per share on $1.15 billion of revenue.
One reason that First Republic was seen as a potentially weak bank by investors and customers was its high percentage of uninsured deposits, which was an issue in the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank. The bank said Monday that more than 70% of deposits were insured at the end of March, excluding the $30 billion from large banks.
First Republic reported that as of April 21 it had $45.1 billion of cash, cash equivalents and additional borrowing capacity, again excluding the $30 billion.
Shares of First Republic were down more than 80% for the year as of Monday’s market close.
Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the level of insured deposits.