Q4 2017 Hart Charts Press Release

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For Immediate Release

January 8, 2018

Inland Northwest Index Dips While S&P Gains in Fourth Quarter

Hart Capital Management, Inc. has released its Fourth Quarter 2017 Hart Capital Inland Northwest Index & Composite (the Hart Charts). The Index, which tracks nine of the largest and most influential publicly traded companies in the Inland Northwest in a methodology similar to that of the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500), decreased 3.7% over the last three months, while the S&P 500 rose 6.1% in the same period.

For the quarter, W.T.B. Financial Corporation (WTBFB) led the Index, returning 19.2%. The company’s outperformance was attributable to strong financial performance, with earnings per share for the third quarter increasing 15% compared to the second quarter. Also, as a full tax payer, the bank should see a nice benefit under the recent tax reform bill. This was reflected in the WTBFB share price, which posted a strong gain in December of 9%. The other top performers in the quarter were Idaho Independent Bank (IIBK) and Northwest Bancorporation, Inc. (NBCT), rising 5.2% and 4.6%, respectively. Similar to Washington Trust Bank, Idaho Independent reported strong results for their third quarter, with earnings per share growth of 19% compared to the second quarter. Northwest Bancorporation showed strong growth for the quarter, helped by its acquisition of Portland-based CenterPointe Community Bank. Both of these banks should also benefit from recent tax reform. HeclaMining Company (HL) was the weakest performer with a decline of 20.9%.

For the twelve-month period ended December 31, W.T.B. Financial Corporation, Avista Corporation (AVA),and Idaho Independent Bank led the Index, increasing 38.8%, 28.8%, and 22.6%, respectively. The outperformance for Avista can mainly be attributed to their pending acquisition by Hydro One, as they announced in July. Clearwater Paper Corporation (CLW) was the worst performer in the Index, declining 30.7% in the same period. The company’s performance in the year has been impacted by many issues such as prolonged facilities maintenance, hurricanes, and higher input costs.

The Hart Capital Management Composite declined $743 million, or 6.1%, for the fourth quarter, due primarily to declines in Hecla Mining Company and Itron, Inc. (ITRI), down $419 million and $356 million, respectively. Year to date, the Composite has risen $589 million, or 5.4%, from $10.9 billion to $11.5 billion.

A copy of the most recent Hart Charts has been included with this release for review.

Hart Capital Management, Inc. is an independent, research-focused investment firm that serves the Inland Northwest from its headquarters in Spokane, Washington.

For detailed information related to Hart Capital Management, Inc. or the Hart Charts, please contact us directly.


Craig Hart, (509) 444-7007, craig@hartcap.com

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