First Citizens’ profit jumps

The corporate parent of First Citizens Bank reported a 25 percent increase in profit in the fourth quarter, which it attributed to a lower provision for loan losses and improved noninterest income.

Raleigh-based First Citizens BancShares reported net income of $27.2 million, or $2.83 per share, in the fourth quarter. A year ago its profit was $21.7 million, or $2.15 per share.

The bank’s provision for loan losses totaled $7.3 million in the fourth quarter, down from $64.9 million a year ago. Noninterest income totaled $69.2 million, more than double that of a year ago.

Those improvements were partially offset by a 33 percent decline in net interest income to $176.6 million.

First Citizens has more than 400 branches in 17 states and the District of Columbia. It had $17.87 billion in deposits as of Dec. 31, down $212 million from a year earlier.

For all of 2013, net income totaled $167.7 million, or $17.43 per share, versus $134.3 million, or $13.11 per share, in 2012.

First Citizen shares closed Thursday at $223, up $3.90. The stock is up 29 percent over the past year.