January 28, 2014 - 6:30 AM EST
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World Acceptance Corporation Reports Improved Third Quarter Results

World Acceptance Corporation (NASDAQ: WRLD) today reported improved financial results for its third fiscal quarter and nine months ended December 31, 2013.

Net income for the third quarter increased 11.0% to $23.0 million compared to $20.7 million for the same quarter of the prior year. Net income per diluted share increased 25.3% to $1.98 in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 compared to $1.58 in the prior year quarter. Total revenues increased to $160.5 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2014, a 7.3% increase over the $149.6 million reported in the third quarter last year.

Sandy McLean, CEO, stated, “The results for our third fiscal quarter were positively affected by increased interest and fee income resulting from the state law changes in Texas, Georgia, and Indiana, reversals of long-term incentive accruals due to the departure of the Company’s COO during the quarter, as well as a leveling off of the Company’s charge-off ratios.” Additionally, “The Company’s growth in earnings per share has benefitted from our ongoing share repurchase program during the past year. We continue to use our excellent cash flow and strong financial position to fund our loan growth while repurchasing shares.” In the first nine months of fiscal 2014, the Company repurchased approximately 1,352,000 shares for $122.0 million. Combined with the 2.6 million shares repurchased during fiscal 2013, the Company reduced its weighted average diluted shares outstanding by 10.9% when comparing the two nine-month periods.

Gross loans rose to $1.26 billion at December 31, 2013, a 6.8% increase over the $1.18 billion outstanding at December 31, 2012, an 18.5% increase since the beginning of the fiscal year. The third quarter’s growth rate in loans was similar to the second quarter’s growth rate, but was lower than growth rates in prior quarters due to lower loan demand from our US operations during the past two quarters.

Interest and fee income increased 9.1% to $142.2 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 from $130.3 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2013 due to continued growth in loan volume and expansion of offices. Insurance and other income decreased by 5.4% to $18.3 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 compared with $19.3 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2013.

The net charge-off rate for the third quarter of fiscal 2014 increased slightly as a percent of net loans on an annualized basis from 15.6% for the three months ended December 31, 2012 to 15.7% for the three months ended December 31, 2013. Mr. McLean stated, “Net charge-offs as a percentage of average net loans on an annualized basis were more in line with historical levels than we have seen over the last two quarters.” Accounts contractually delinquent 61+ days increased from 4.3% at December 31, 2012 to 5.0% at December 31, 2013. The provision for loan losses rose 10.0% to $41.1 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 compared to the third quarter of fiscal 2013.

The Company’s general and administrative expenses increased by 3.3% compared with the third quarter of the prior year due primarily to new offices opened during fiscal 2014. The Company opened 45 new offices, purchased one new office and merged one office during the first nine-months of the fiscal year, resulting in a total of 1,248 offices at December 31, 2013. General and administrative expenses as a percent of total revenues decreased from 50.0% in the prior year quarter to 48.2% during the current fiscal quarter. General and administrative expenses for the current quarter include the reversal of $2.9 million (pre-tax) of accrued compensation related expense due to the resignation of the Company’s previous COO. The Company’s third quarter effective income tax rate decreased slightly to 37.2% compared with 37.4% in the prior year’s third quarter.

Other key return ratios for the third quarter included a 12.1% return on average assets and a return on average equity of 30.0% (both on a trailing 12-month basis).

Nine-Month Results

For the first nine-months of the fiscal year, net income increased 2.2% to $67.6 million compared to $66.2 million for the nine-months ended December 31, 2012. Fully diluted net income per share rose 14.6% to $5.65 for the first nine-months of fiscal 2014 compared to $4.93 for the first nine-months of fiscal 2013.

Total revenues for the first nine-months of fiscal 2014 rose 8.0% to $455.7 million compared to $421.9 million during the corresponding period of the previous year. Annualized net charge-offs as a percent of average net loans increased from 14.0% during the first nine-months of fiscal 2013 to 14.9% for the first nine-months of fiscal 2014.

About World Acceptance Corporation

World Acceptance Corporation is one of the largest small-loan consumer finance companies, operating 1,248 offices in 14 states and Mexico. It is also the parent company of ParaData Financial Systems, a provider of computer software solutions for the consumer finance industry.

Third Quarter Conference Call

The senior management of World Acceptance Corporation will be discussing these results in its quarterly conference call to be held at 10:00 a.m. Eastern time today. A script of the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer’s prepared remarks for the conference call has been furnished as Exhibit 99.2 to the Company’s Form 8-K filed today with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) in connection with this press release, and is available via the SEC’s Edgar database at www.sec.gov, and will also be posted to the Company’s website as soon as practicable. Interested parties may participate in this call by dialing 1-888-576-4387, passcode 6726958. A simulcast of the conference call is also available on the Internet at http://www.videonewswire.com/event.asp?id=97831. The call will be available for replay on the Internet for approximately 30 days.

This press release may contain various “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, that represent the Company’s expectations or beliefs concerning future events. Statements other than those of historical fact, as well as those identified by the words “anticipate,” “estimate,” “plan,” “expect,” “believe,” “may,” “will,” and “should” or any variation of the foregoing and similar expressions are forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are about matters that are inherently subject to risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results or performance to differ from the expectations expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements include the following: recently enacted, proposed or future legislation and the manner in which it is implemented; the nature and scope of regulatory authority, particularly discretionary authority, that may be exercised by regulators having jurisdiction over the Company’s business or consumer financial transactions generically; the impact of changes in accounting rules and regulations, or their interpretation or application, which could materially and adversely affect the Company’s reported financial statements or necessitate material delays or changes in the issuance of the Company’s audited financial statements; the Company's assessment of its internal control over financial reporting, and the timing and effectiveness of the Company's efforts to remediate any reported material weakness in its internal control over financial reporting; changes in interest rates; risks related to expansion and foreign operations; risks inherent in making loans, including repayment risks and value of collateral; the timing and amount of revenues that may be recognized by the Company; changes in current revenue and expense trends (including trends affecting delinquencies and charge-offs); changes in the Company’s markets and general changes in the economy (particularly in the markets served by the Company); and the unpredictable nature of litigation. These and other factors are discussed in greater detail in Part I, Item 1A, “Risk Factors” in the Company’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K/A filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the Company’s other reports filed with, or furnished to, the SEC from time to time. World Acceptance Corporation does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements it makes. The Company is also not responsible for updating the information contained in this press release beyond the publication date, or for changes made to this document by wire services or Internet services.

World Acceptance Corporation
Consolidated Statements of Operations
(unaudited and in thousands, except per share amounts)
Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended
December 31, December 31,
2013 2012 2013 2012
Interest & fees $ 142,213 130,312 403,202 367,429
Insurance & other 18,280 19,328   52,520   54,445  
Total revenues 160,493 149,640 455,722 421,874
Provision for loan losses 41,116 37,395 108,007 93,412
General and administrative expenses
Personnel 49,393 48,319 151,837 141,402
Occupancy & equipment 9,702 9,110 28,774 26,891
Advertising 7,317 6,535 13,089 11,981
Intangible amortization 245 329 822 1,037
Other 10,641 10,505   30,001   28,804  
77,298 74,798 224,523 210,115
Interest expense 5,546 4,404   15,503   12,396  
Total expenses 123,960 116,597   348,033   315,923  
Income before taxes 36,533 33,043 107,689 105,951
Income taxes 13,579 12,369   40,058   39,761  
Net income $ 22,954 20,674   67,631   66,190  
Diluted earnings per share $ 1.98 1.58   5.65   4.93  
Diluted weighted average shares outstanding 11,593 13,100   11,970   13,431  
Consolidated Balance Sheets
(unaudited and in thousands)
December 31, March 31, December 31,
2013 2013 2012
Cash $ 19,388 11,625 17,174
Gross loans receivable 1,264,058 1,067,052 1,183,706
Less: Unearned interest & fees (347,333 ) (284,956 ) (324,731 )
Allowance for loan losses (74,602 ) (59,981 ) (66,804 )
Loans receivable, net 842,123 722,115 792,171
Property and equipment, net 24,449 23,935 24,105
Deferred income taxes 39,109 29,416 28,248
Goodwill 5,967 5,896 5,896
Intangibles 4,013 4,625 4,661
Other assets 11,962   11,713   11,929  
$ 947,011   809,325   884,184  
Notes payable 583,250 400,250 492,700
Income tax payable 6,545 13,942 5,190
Accounts payable and accrued expenses 28,646   28,737   26,786  
Total liabilities 618,441 442,929 524,676
Shareholders' equity 328,570   366,396   359,508  
$ 947,011   809,325   884,184  

Selected Consolidated Statistics
(dollars in thousands)
Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended
December 31, December 31,
2013 2012 2013 2012
Expenses as a percent of total revenues:
Provision for loan losses 25.6 % 25.0 % 23.7 % 22.1 %
General and administrative expenses 48.2 % 50.0 % 49.3 % 49.8 %
Interest expense 3.5 % 2.9 % 3.4 % 2.9 %
Average gross loans receivable $ 1,202,204 $ 1,124,333 $ 1,149,554 $ 1,063,557
Average loans receivable $ 869,542 $ 816,671 $ 834,004 $ 774,896
Loan volume $ 863,332 $ 865,507 $ 2,418,975 $ 2,379,209
Net charge-offs as percent of average loans 15.7 % 15.6 % 14.9 % 14.0 %
Return on average assets (trailing 12 months) 12.1 % 13.0 % 12.1 % 13.0 %
Return on average equity (trailing 12 months) 30.0 % 26.0 % 30.0 % 26.0 %
Offices opened (closed) during the period, net 18 13 45 49
Offices open at end of period 1,248 1,186 1,248 1,186

Source: Business Wire (January 28, 2014 - 6:30 AM EST)

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