Republic First Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: FRBK), the Philadelphia-headquartered holding company for Republic First Bank d/b/a Republic Bank, announced it is shutting down its mortgage origination business.
“Republic Bank will exit its legacy mortgage origination business,” said the company in a press statement, adding it would “continue to support local communities through various Community Reinvestment Act initiatives driven through its core business lines.”
Republic First noted that it was primarily focused on originating long-term jumbo mortgages “priced at aggressive rates,” but noted that product “no longer aligns with the company’s preference for shorter duration and better risk adjusted return asset classes. Further, the high-cost nature of a jumbo mortgage origination platform is no longer consistent with the company’s strategy for enhancing profitability and dedicating more resources to core business lines.”
Republic First also announced it would “streamline its commercial lending business in New York City and has made commensurate reductions in force in its New York lending and credit teams.” As a result, the bank said, it would now “focus on its strong commercial relationships in and around the bank’s core Philadelphia Metropolitan area market, serving clients domiciled here who have businesses inside and outside the region.”
Thomas X. Geisel, president and CEO of Republic First Bancorp, Inc., stated the exiting of these business lines represented difficult decisions, it nonetheless aligned with “efficiency initiatives to grow profitability, allow us to better serve our customers and create value for shareholders and all stakeholders.”