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Wintrust reports record profits for 11th straight quarter

The Wintrust Bank branch on Ridge Road in Lansing. The bank posted a record third-quarter profit.

Wintrust, one of Chicagoland's largest banks, with branches in Dyer, Lansing and the south suburbs, reported record profits for the 11th straight quarter.

The Rosemont-based bank earned $91.9 million in the third quarter as compared to $65.6 million in the third quarter of 2017 and $89.6 million in the second quarter. Wintrust earned $1.53 per share, up from $1.12 a share at the same time a year earlier.

Wintrust has made $263.5 million in net income for the first nine months of 2018, as compared to $188.9 million through the same period in 2017.

"These results reflected the steady strength of our internal growth engine at Wintrust as we grew assets by $678 million compared to the prior quarter," Wintrust President and CEO Edward Wehmer said. The third quarter of 2018 was also characterized by strong deposit growth, increased deposit costs, higher levels of liquidity and the acquisition of Delaware Place Bank."

The bank increased loans by $513 million as compared to the second quarter and grew assets by $678 million to more than $30 billion.

"We grew our loan portfolio by $513 million during the third quarter, which included $151 million of loans acquired in relation to the acquisition of Delaware Place Bank," Wehmer said. "We experienced strong loan growth among our various loan categories during the period, including our commercial, commercial real estate and premium financing portfolios. We continue to take a measured approach in evaluating new loan opportunities. Our strategy to reduce our average loan to average deposit ratio below 90 percent continued in the third quarter. As part of this strategy, liquidity was accumulated and held to be invested at times that would yield appropriate spreads."

Wintrust grew deposits by $551 million in the third quarter, including $213 million from the acquisition. It now has $24.9 billion in assets.

"As our growth engine continues its momentum towards the end of 2018, we expect continued organic growth in all areas of our business," Wehmer  said. "Loan growth at the end of the third quarter should add to momentum into the fourth quarter as period-end loan balances exceeded the third quarter average balances by approximately $301 million. Wintrust continues to take a steady and measured approach to achieving our main objectives of growing franchise value, increasing profitability, leveraging our expense infrastructure and continuing to increase shareholder value."

The bank stated a long-term goal of growing in the Northwest Indiana market at an economic luncheon it hosts locally.

Wintrust Executive Vice President of Commercial Banking Paul Carlisle said the bank already has a robust retail business with Northwest Indiana customers at its south suburban branches.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.