County Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:ICBK) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript
Feb 11, 2019 • 12:30 pm ET
Good afternoon, and welcome to the County Bancorp, Inc. Fourth Quarter 2018 Earnings Conference Call. All participants will be in listen-only mode. (Operator Instructions) After today's presentation their will be an opportunity to ask questions. (Operator Instructions) Please note this event is being recorded.
I would now like to turn the conference over to Glen Stiteley, Chief Financial Officer. Please go ahead sir.
Glen L. Stiteley
Good morning or good afternoon, everyone depending on where you are at today. Tim and I have some prepared remarks related to slide three of our slide deck, you can follow on. As a reminder, this call contains forward-looking statements based on our current plans, projections and these statements are subject to various risks, including the risk we've described in our SEC filings. Actual events may differ from these forward-looking statements. In addition, our past results of operations are not necessarily indicative of our future results.
Now, I've got the legal leads out of the way. Couple of things, and again related -- really to our slide deck. First off, unaudited transition. On December 4, 2018, Schenck S.C announced the sale to CliftonLarsonAllen. Our long-term auditor, Shank had a large presence in the, in our Northeast Wisconsin markets, and they didn't work for most of our Directors and Executive team. This created a potential independence issue with Clifton. So rather than force all our folks to find new accountants or lose good directors, we decided to take some short-term pain and switch our auditors.
Plante Moran was quickly engaged, and we started the transition process. Because of our unique dairy ag lending, it took some time to get Plante up to speed on our credit practices and delayed our originally planned earnings release date in January. We're pleased to say that Plante has identified no material audit issues during their work so far.
Now I will turn it over to Tim Schneider for an update on the ag economy and credit.
Timothy J. Schneider
Good day everybody. On the ag front, credit quality continues to be our primary focus as the ag and diary environment continues to be challenged as we're in our fourth year of our, of the commodity price lump. We have devote additional resources to assist in working through this challenging environment and managed -- by managing our classified and non-performing assets.
Non-performing assets level decline in the fourth quarter primarily due to FSA guarantee claims that we collected, collateral liquidation and a few write downs, classified asset level which we illustrated in our earnings release this quarter increase in the quarter again primarily due to the strain in our in our dairy, ag portfolio. Loan loss provision increased in the quarter related to charge offs taken in the quarter as well.
We continue to see land values, which is our primary collateral for most for our powers remaining stable. Machinery and cattle values have softened a bit, smaller dairy facilities or buildings and improvements have also softened a bit as we've seen in the market.