Zions Bancorp reports quarterly earnings dip about 8.6 percent

Zions Bancorp, the parent company of Nevada State Bank, reported that its first quarter earnings fell about 8.6 percent in 2014, as the company worked to meet Federal Reserve stress test standards.

The Salt Lake City regional lender came under fire last month after failing the Fed’s stress test.

The bank said late Monday that its first quarter profits were at $101.2 million, a drop from the $110.7 profit at the same period in 2013. Earnings per share were posted at 41 cents, down from 48 cents the year prior.

“After a strong fourth quarter, our first quarter loan growth was somewhat slower; however, our capital levels continue to improve and we are optimistic as we look at the underlying economic strength within our footprint,” Chairman and Chief Executive Harris H. Simmons said in a statement.

Shares of Zion fell 61 cents, or 2.02 percent, to close Tuesday at $29.62 on the Nasdaq.

Last month, the Salt Lake City regional lender stood alone among 30 major banks to fail the Fed’s measurement of financial capital at Tier 1 institutions. The government set up a hypothetical economic collapse which envisioned a deep recession, a rise in unemployment and plummeting home prices.

Zions operates 50 Nevada State Bank branches statewide.

The Fed found that Zions’ Tier 1 common ratio, which compares high-quality capital to risk-weighted assets, was 3.6 percent and fell below the minimum allowance of 5 percent.

Zions planned to cut higher risk assets to meet the standards, which are part of financial regulations set forth under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

Zions, with $55 billion in assets, was expected to resubmit its plans to the Fed by the end of this month.

Nevada State Bank officials plan to release first quarter earnings later this week.