The improvement in net income was principally due to lower provisions for loan losses and higher gains on sales of loans. Those strengths were partially offset by higher net losses and expenses on foreclosed real estate, higher compensation-related costs, lower gains on sales of investments and lower net interest income.
Michael Crowley Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Bank Mutual, said, "Lower interest rates in the first quarter continued to benefit our mortgage banking operations, resulting in substantially higher gains on sales of residential loans."
David Baumgarten, president of Bank Mutual, said, "Lower credit-related losses also contributed to the improvement in our earnings. We are pleased that our non-performing loans declined for the fourth straight quarter and are less than half what they were a year ago. We remain cautiously optimistic that improvements in economic and market conditions in our local communities will enable this trend to continue in the near term."