ServisFirst Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:SFBS) Q4 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Jan 21, 2020 • 04:00 pm ET
Good day and welcome to the ServisFirst Bancshares Incorporated Fourth Quarter Earnings Conference Call. All participants will be in a listen-only mode. [Operator Instructions] After today's presentation, there will be an opportunity to ask questions. Please note that this event is being recorded.
I would now like to turn the conference over to Mr. Davis Mange, Investor Relations. Please go ahead, sir.
Thanks, Chuck. Good afternoon and welcome to our fourth quarter earnings call. We will have our CEO, Tom Broughton; and our CFO, Bud Foshee, covering some highlights from the quarter and then we'll take your questions.
I'll now cover our forward-looking statements disclosure. Some of the discussion in today's earnings call may include forward-looking statements. Actual results may differ from any projections shared today due to factors described in our most recent 10-K and 10-Q filings. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made and ServisFirst assumes no duty to update them.
With that, I'll turn the call over to Tom.
Thomas Ashford Broughton III
Thank you, Davis. And good afternoon to everybody on the call. We'll -- first thing I'll do is kind of recap 2019 and then talk about 2020 a little bit moving forward. So you know to restate to you, most of you have heard it what we say, we always say we're disciplined growth company that sets high standards for performance. And I think 2019 did not meet our high standards for performance that we would like.
To give you a recap of the year, the year was negatively influenced by a confluence of three main events. One, obviously is we encountered unexpected margin pressure in 2019. The result of that was obviously everybody realized where we are with that, maybe we were a little bit slow to react to it possibly, but anyway that was obviously one of the factors; the second, is we hired 24 great new producers in 2019. Those great producers are going to pay off in 2020, but certainly that would drag to income in 2019; and the third thing is that, we were -- we've had added substantial new hires at the suggestion of our regulators over the last two years as we have already transitioned to a large bank regulatory team from the State of Alabama and FDIC. So all in all, -- so the year was like a golfer would call a sun in all shot, not what you wanted, but we'll take it.
So with that, we'll talk a little bit about where things really got better in the fourth quarter. It was margin improvement and Bud it will go over it by month in a minute, but -- by month, but it is much improved over where it was in the third quarter. Our management team spent a lot of time on margin management in the fourth quarter and we're certainly pleased with the results. The loan growth for the quarter was 14% annualized and 11% year-over-year and the deposit growth was very solid at