With its profits up about 50 percent over a year ago, First Business Financial Services, Madison, said Thursday it is raising its dividend to shareholders and setting up an endowment fund “to sustain ongoing charitable giving in First Business’ markets.”

The bank holding company, parent of First Business Bank, had net income of $3.8 million, or 95 cents a share, for the fourth quarter of 2013, up from net income of $2.5 million, or 86 cents a share, for the 2012 fourth quarter.

For the full year, earnings were $13.7 million, or $3.49 a share, up from $8.9 million, or $3.29 a share, for 2012.

First Business said its profits reflect the effect of a stock offering of 1.27 million shares in December 2012 that netted

$27.1 million in proceeds.

Loans and leases totaled $967.1 million as of Dec. 31, an increase of $70.5 million from $896.6 million a year ago. Meanwhile, the ratio of non-performing assets that were delinquent at least 90 days was 1.28 percent, the same level as a year ago.

The bank company said it is raising its quarterly dividend to 21 cents, up from the current 14 cents a share, and putting a $1.3 million endowment into the First Business Charitable Foundation. Its stock closed Thursday unchanged at $39.30.

  • Business reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal

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