City National Bank Earnings and Accolades Impress Industry and Customers

City National Bank of Florida reported record-breaking earnings, enjoying the best year in the bank’s 65-year history on the heels of accolades from the media, rating agencies and regulators.

The bank recently received its third-consecutive, quarterly Five-Star “Superior” rating from BauerFinancial, and was named the Best Business Bank in a recent poll of the readers of the Daily Business Review.

The bank founded in Miami Beach in 1946 continues to deliver impressive results and steady performance for its clients and the community.

“We strive to outperform the industry and ourselves. Our results prove we’re doing just that,” City National Bank President and CEO Jorge Gonzalez said. “We consistently deliver best-in-class service through personal relationships with our clients and our brand of banking has been strongly received.”

Net income soared – capping the strongest year in the bank’s history. CNB posted a $190.2 million profit for 2012, compared to $34.4 million for 2011.The bank’s deposits grew by $613 million, it had more than $1 billion in new lending, its loan portfolio grew by almost half a billion dollars and the bank’s assets grew to $4.81 billion from $3.97 billion a year earlier.

CNB’s results were also driven by unparalleled client retention and acquisition, and dramatic lending growth. The bank closed more than $1 billion in new loan commitments last year, up from $750 million. The loan growth included a 49 percent jump in commercial lending and a 30 percent increase in residential loans.

City National Bank’s financial performance, strength and safety were recognized by BauerFinancial, the leading bank rating firm. It continues to rate CNB a Five-Star “Superior” bank, the highest rating possible. The rating is based on federal regulatory data used to rate banks, including capital, profitability and credit quality.

Gonzalez called the findings “gratifying” and said the recognition is a “confirmation that CNB is one of strongest, best capitalized and most liquid banks in the country.”

The financial results are the product of a growth and diversification strategy that Gonzalez launched three years ago.

“By diversifying we only further strengthen an already strong organization,” said Gonzalez. “This makes us a predictable partner that can deliver results to our clients.”

The bank created four distinct lines of business: Personal & Business Banking, Corporate Banking, Real Estate Banking and the Private Client Group. CNB has long been known for its real estate lending and high-end banking, and Gonzalez wanted to strengthen those groups and boost business and residential offerings.

Two years ago, CNB launched its residential lending unit, which has shown remarkable growth. Last year, CNB’s residential unit made more than $250 million in mortgages. And as the economy has improved the bank has begun focusing more on business banking, adding staff and expanding its offerings.

“Business banking will be a major growth area for the bank in 2013,” Gonzalez said.

But the marketplace has already endorsed CNB’s expanded business bank offerings and client experience.

The readers of the Daily Business Review voted City National, the Best Business Bank from among more than two dozen banks. That followed the bank being named the South Florida Business Journal’s first Community Bank of the Year in 2011.

The awards come on the heels of a recent study of service complaints filed against financial institutions. The report revealed that no complaints were filed against City National Bank with state banking regulators – while complaints against banks overall soared.

With its pursuit of client-centric service, an array of consumer- and business-class offerings, and continued investments in people, technology and growth, Gonzalez said the bank is prepared to capitalize on continued market resurgence and opportunities that lie ahead.

“City National Bank is one of the most liquid and best capitalized banks in Florida. The markets, clients and our balance sheet recognize this,” Gonzalez said. “We intend to build on the momentum of 2012. Great things await during the coming year.”

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