TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF
THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
for the transition period from _________ to __________
Commission File Number 1-6887
BANK OF HAWAII CORPORATION
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
Delaware (State of incorporation)
99-0148992 (I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
130 Merchant Street, Honolulu, Hawaii (Address of principal executive offices)
96813 (Zip Code)
(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of Each Class
Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
Common Stock, $.01 Par Value
New York Stock Exchange
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes x No o
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes o No x
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes x No o
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (Section 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files). Yes x No o
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (Section 229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. o
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer x
Accelerated filer o
Non-accelerated filer o (Do not check if a smaller reporting company)
Smaller reporting company o
Emerging growth company o
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act).
Yes o No x
The aggregate market value of the registrant’s outstanding voting common stock held by non-affiliates on June 30, 2018 (the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter), determined using the per share closing price on that date on the New York Stock Exchange of $83.42, was approximately $3,422,918,887. There was no non-voting common equity of the registrant outstanding on that date.
As of February 15, 2019, there were 41,212,202 shares of common stock outstanding.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of the Proxy Statement relating to the 2019 Annual Meeting of Shareholders to be held on April 26, 2019, are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Report.
Bank of Hawaii Corporation (the “Parent”) is a Delaware corporation and a bank holding company (“BHC”) headquartered in Honolulu, Hawaii. The Parent’s principal operating subsidiary, Bank of Hawaii (the “Bank”), was organized on December 17, 1897 and is chartered by the State of Hawaii. The Bank’s deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (the “FDIC”) and the Bank is a member of the Federal Reserve System.
The Bank, directly and through its subsidiaries, provides a broad range of financial products and services primarily to customers in Hawaii, Guam, and other Pacific Islands. References to “we,” “our,” “us,” or “the Company” refer to the Parent and its subsidiaries and are consolidated for financial reporting purposes. The Bank’s subsidiaries include Bank of Hawaii Leasing, Inc., Bankoh Investment Services, Inc., and Pacific Century Life Insurance Corporation. The Bank’s subsidiaries are engaged in equipment leasing, securities brokerage, investment advisory services, and providing credit insurance.
We are organized into four business segments for management reporting purposes: Retail Banking, Commercial Banking, Investment Services and Private Banking, and Treasury and Other. See Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations (“MD&A”) and Note 13 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for more information.
Our annual report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K, and all amendments to those reports can be found free of charge on our website at www.boh.com as soon as reasonably practicable after such material is electronically filed with or furnished to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”). The SEC maintains a website, www.sec.gov, which contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC. Our Corporate Governance Guidelines; charters of the Audit and Risk Committee, the Human Resources and Compensation Committee, and the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee; and our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics are available on our website at www.boh.com. Printed copies of this information may be obtained, without charge, by written request to the Corporate Secretary at 130 Merchant Street, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96813.
The Company operates in a highly competitive environment subject to intense competition from traditional financial service providers including banks, savings associations, credit unions, mortgage companies, finance companies, mutual funds, brokerage firms, insurance companies, and other non-traditional providers of financial services including financial service subsidiaries of commercial and manufacturing companies. Some of our competitors are not subject to the same level of regulation and oversight that is required of banks and BHCs, and receive favorable tax treatment. As a result, some of our competitors may have lower cost structures. Also, some of our competitors, through delivery channels such as the Internet, may be based outside of the markets that we serve. By emphasizing our extensive branch network, exceptional service levels, and knowledge of local trends and conditions, the Company has developed an effective competitive advantage in its market.
Supervision and Regulation
Our operations are subject to extensive regulation by federal and state governmental authorities. The regulations are primarily intended to protect depositors, customers, and the integrity of the U.S. banking system and capital markets. The following information describes some of the more significant laws and regulations applicable to us. The descriptions below are qualified in their entirety by reference to the applicable laws and regulations. Proposals to change the laws and regulations governing the banking industry are frequently raised in Congress, in state legislatures, and with the various bank regulatory agencies. Changes in applicable laws or regulations, or a change in the way such laws or regulations are interpreted by regulatory agencies or courts, may have a material impact on our business, operations, and earnings.
The Parent is registered as a BHC under the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, as amended (the “BHC Act”), and is subject to the supervision of and to examination by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve (the “FRB”). The Parent is also registered as a financial institution holding company under the Hawaii Code of Financial Institutions (the “Code”) and is subject to the registration, reporting, and examination requirements of the Code.
The BHC Act prohibits, with certain exceptions, a BHC from acquiring direct or indirect beneficial ownership or control of either a company that is not a bank, or more than 5% of the voting shares of any bank, without the FRB’s prior approval. A BHC is generally prohibited from engaging in any activity other than banking, managing or controlling banks or other subsidiaries authorized under the BHC Act, or an activity that the FRB has determined to be so closely related to those activities as to be a proper incident to one of them.
Under FRB policy, a BHC is expected to serve as a source of financial and management strength to its subsidiary bank. A BHC is also expected to commit resources to support its subsidiary bank in circumstances where it might not do so absent such a policy. Under this policy, a BHC is expected to maintain reliable funding and contingency plans to stand ready to provide adequate capital funds to its subsidiary bank during periods of financial adversity and to maintain the financial flexibility and capital-raising capacity to obtain additional resources for assisting its subsidiary bank.
Under the Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act of 1994 (the “Riegle-Neal Act”) banks and BHCs from any state are permitted to acquire banks located in any other state, subject to certain conditions, including certain nationwide and state-imposed deposit concentration limits. Banks also have the ability, subject to certain restrictions, to acquire branches outside their home states by acquisition or merger. The establishment of new interstate branches is also possible in those states with laws that expressly permit de novo branching. Because the Code permits de novo branching by out-of-state banks, those banks may establish new branches in Hawaii.
Bank of Hawaii
The Bank is subject to extensive federal, state, territorial and foreign regulations that significantly affect its business and activities. The Bank is subject to supervision and examination by the FRB of San Francisco, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the “CFPB”), and the State of Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs’ (“DCCA”) Division of Financial Institutions. These regulatory bodies have broad authority to implement standards and to initiate proceedings designed to prohibit depository institutions from engaging in activities that may represent “unsafe” or “unsound” banking practices or constitute violations of applicable laws, rules, regulations, administrative orders, or written agreements with regulators. The standards relate generally to operations and management, asset quality, interest rate exposure, capital, executive compensation, and consumer protection. The regulatory bodies are authorized to take action against institutions that fail to meet such standards, including the assessment of civil monetary penalties and restitution, the issuance of cease-and-desist orders, and other actions, up to and including revocation of a bank’s charter for the most severe infractions, or putting such a bank into receivership if it is not financially viable.
Bankoh Investment Services, Inc., the broker-dealer and investment adviser subsidiary of the Bank, is incorporated in Hawaii and is regulated by the SEC, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, and the DCCA’s Insurance Division. Pacific Century Life Insurance Corporation is incorporated in Arizona and is primarily regulated by the State of Arizona Department of Insurance.
The Dodd Frank Act
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (the “Dodd-Frank Act”) and its regulations implemented sweeping changes to the financial regulatory landscape aimed at strengthening the sound operation of the financial services sector by mandating higher capital and liquidity requirements, establishing new standards for mortgage lenders, increasing regulation of executive and incentive-based compensation and numerous other provisions. Provisions also limit or place significant burdens and costs on activities traditionally conducted by banking organizations, such as arranging and participating in swap and derivative transactions, proprietary trading and investing in private equity and other funds.
Several provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act were significantly changed by enactment of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act in May 2018, notably by eliminating the requirement for institutions like the Company to perform and publicly disclose periodic stress tests. The Company continues to monitor and implement rules, regulations, and interpretations of the Dodd-Frank Act as they are adopted and modified, and to evaluate their application to our current and future operations.
In July, 2013, the FRB, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the “OCC”) and the FDIC adopted new capital rules (the “Rules”). These Rules were designed to help ensure that banks maintain strong capital positions by increasing both the quantity and quality of capital held by U.S. banking organizations. The Rules reflect, in part, certain standards initially adopted by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision in December 2010 (which are commonly called “Basel III” standards) as well as requirements by the Dodd-Frank Act.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991 (“FDICIA”) identifies five capital categories for insured depository institutions: “well capitalized,” “adequately capitalized,” “undercapitalized,” “significantly undercapitalized,” and “critically undercapitalized.”
The federal banking agencies are authorized by FDICIA to impose progressively more restrictive constraints on operations, management and capital distributions, depending on the capital category in which an institution is classified. These “prompt corrective actions” can include: requiring an insured depository institution to adopt a capital restoration plan guaranteed by the institution’s parent company; placing limits on asset growth and restrictions on activities, including restrictions on transactions with affiliates; restricting the interest rates the institution may pay on deposits; prohibiting the payment of principal or interest on subordinated debt; prohibiting the holding company from making capital distribution without prior regulatory approval; and ultimately appointing a receiver for the institution.
A “well capitalized” institution must have a Common Equity Tier 1 Capital Ratio of at least 6.5%, a Tier 1 Capital Ratio of at least 8%, a Total Capital Ratio of at least 10%, a Tier 1 Leverage Ratio of at least 5%, and not be subject to a capital directive order. As of December 31, 2018, the Bank was classified as “well capitalized.” The classification of a depository institution under one of the categories set out above is primarily for the purpose of applying the prompt corrective action, and is not intended to be, nor should it be interpreted as, a representation of the overall financial condition or the prospects of that financial institution. See Note 11 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for more information.
The Parent is a legal entity separate and distinct from the Bank. The Parent’s principal source of funds to pay dividends on its common stock and to service its debt is dividends from the Bank. Various federal and state laws and regulations limit the amount of dividends the Bank may pay to the Parent without regulatory approval. The FRB is authorized to determine the circumstances when the payment of dividends would be an unsafe or unsound practice and to prohibit such payments. The right of the Parent, its shareholders, and creditors to participate in any distribution of the assets or earnings of its subsidiaries is also subject to the prior claims of creditors of those subsidiaries. For information regarding the limitations on the Bank’s ability to pay dividends to the Parent, see Note 11 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Transactions with Affiliates and Insiders
Transactions between the Bank and any affiliate are governed by Sections 23A and 23B of the Federal Reserve Act. An affiliate of the Bank is any company or entity which controls, is controlled by or is under common control with the Bank which is not a subsidiary of the Bank. Under federal law, the Bank is subject to restrictions that limit the transfer of funds or other items of value to the Parent, and any other non-bank affiliates in “covered transactions.” In general, covered transactions include making loans to an affiliate, the purchase of or investment in the securities issued by an affiliate, the purchase of assets from an affiliate, the acceptance of securities issued by an affiliate as collateral security for a loan or extensions of credit to any person or company, the issuance of a guarantee, acceptance or letter of credit on behalf of an affiliate, or certain transactions with an affiliate that involve the borrowing or lending of securities and certain derivative transactions with an affiliate.
Unless an exemption applies, covered transactions by the Bank with a single affiliate are limited to 10% of the Bank’s capital and surplus, and with respect to all covered transactions with affiliates in the aggregate, they are limited to 20% of the Bank’s capital and surplus. Section 23B of the Federal Reserve Act and Federal Reserve Regulation W also require that certain transactions between the Bank and its affiliates be on terms substantially the same, or at least as favorable to the Bank, as those prevailing at the time for comparable transactions with or involving other non-affiliated persons.
The Federal Reserve Act and Federal Reserve Regulation O place restrictions and certain reporting requirements on any extension of credit made by a member bank to (a) an executive officer, director, or principal shareholder of the bank, or any company of which the bank is a subsidiary, and of any other subsidiary of that company, and (b) a company controlled by such a person, or to a political or campaign committee that benefits or is controlled by such a person (collectively referred to as “insiders”). These restrictions include limits on loans to one borrower and conditions that must be met before such loans can be made. There is also an aggregate limitation on all loans to insiders and their related interests. Certain restrictions also extend to extensions of credit made to an executive officer, directors, or principal shareholder of a bank (or to a related interest of such person) by a correspondent bank.
The Volcker Rule
In December 2013, the Federal Reserve, the OCC, the FDIC, the SEC, and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission issued final rules to implement certain provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act commonly known as the “Volker Rule.” The Volcker Rule generally prohibits U.S. banks from engaging in proprietary trading and restricts those banking entities from sponsoring, investing in, or having certain relationships with hedge funds and private equity funds. The prohibitions under the Volcker Rule are subject to a number of statutory exemptions, restrictions, and definitions. The Volcker Rule has not had a material impact on the Company’s Consolidated Financial Statements, but we continue to evaluate its application to our current and future operations.
The FDIC provides insurance coverage for certain deposits through the Deposit Insurance Fund, which the FDIC maintains by assessing depository institutions an insurance premium. The Company is assessed deposit insurance premiums by the FDIC using a base rate, to which is added temporary surcharges that are used to establish a FDIC reserve fund and pay certain bond obligations. The Bank’s FDIC insurance assessment was $7.7 million in 2018, $8.7 million in 2017, and $8.6 million in 2016.
A depository institution’s deposit insurance may be terminated by the FDIC upon a finding that the institution’s financial condition is unsafe or unsound, or that the institution has engaged in unsafe or unsound practices, or has violated any applicable rule, regulation, or order or condition enacted or imposed by a regulatory agency. Termination of the Bank’s deposit insurance would end its ability to function as a commercial bank in Hawaii.
In the event of the “liquidation or other resolution” of an insured depository institution, claims of insured and uninsured depositors for deposits payable in the United States (including the claims of the FDIC as subrogee of insured depositors), plus certain claims for administrative expenses of the FDIC as a receiver will have priority in payment ahead of unsecured creditors including, in the case of the Bank, its Parent.
Other Safety and Soundness Regulations
The federal banking agencies also have adopted guidelines prescribing safety and soundness standards. These guidelines establish general standards for internal controls, information systems, internal audit systems, loan documentation, credit underwriting, interest rate risk exposure, asset growth, asset quality, earnings standards, compensation, fees and benefits. In general, the guidelines require appropriate systems and practices to identify and manage the risks and exposures specified in the guidelines before capital becomes impaired.
Community Reinvestment and Consumer Protection Laws
Community Reinvestment. The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 (“CRA”) requires the appropriate federal banking agency, in connection with its examination of a bank, to assess the bank’s record in meeting the credit needs of the communities served by the bank, including low and moderate income neighborhoods. Under the CRA, institutions are assigned a rating of “outstanding,” “satisfactory,” “needs to improve,” or “substantial non-compliance.” The regulatory assessment of the bank’s record is made available to the public. Further, these assessments are considered by regulators when evaluating mergers, acquisitions and applicants to open or relocate a branch or facility. The Bank’s current CRA rating is “outstanding”.
Consumer Protection Laws. In addition to the CRA, the Bank is subject to a number of federal laws designed to protect borrowers and promote lending to various sectors of the economy and population in connection with its lending activities. These include the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Truth-in-Lending Act, the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.
Federal banking regulators, pursuant to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, have enacted regulations limiting the ability of banks and other financial institutions to disclose nonpublic consumer information to non-affiliated third parties. The regulations require disclosure of privacy policies and allow consumers to prevent certain personal information from being shared with non-affiliated third parties. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (“FACT Act”) requires financial institutions to develop and implement an identity theft prevention program to detect, prevent and mitigate identity theft “red flags” to reduce the risk that customer information will be misused to conduct fraudulent financial transactions.
A number of other federal and state consumer protection laws extensively govern the Bank’s relationship with its customers. These laws include the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Truth in Lending Act, the Truth in Savings Act, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, the Expedited Funds Availability Act, the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, the Fair Housing Act, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the Service Members Civil Relief Act and these laws’ respective state-law counterparts, as well as state and territorial usury laws and laws regarding unfair and deceptive acts and practices. These and other laws subject the Bank to substantial regulatory oversight and, among other things, require disclosures of the cost of credit and terms of deposit accounts, provide substantive consumer rights, prohibit discrimination in credit transactions, regulate the use of credit report information, provide financial privacy protections, prohibit unfair, deceptive and abusive practices, and restrict the Bank’s ability to raise interest rates.
The CFPB was created under the Dodd-Frank Act as an agency responsible for promulgating and enforcing regulations designed to protect consumers including adding prohibitions on unfair, deceptive and abusive acts and practices. The CFPB, along with other prudential regulators and the Department of Justice, have also expanded the focus of their regulatory examinations and investigations to include “fair and responsible banking.” Fair and responsible banking strives to provide equal credit opportunities to all applicants of a community, to prohibit discrimination by lenders on the basis of certain borrower characteristics, and to ensure that a bank’s practices are not deceptive, unfair, or take unreasonable advantage of consumers or businesses. The enhanced focus encompasses the entire loan life cycle, including post-closing activities such as collections and servicing, and pre-application activities such as marketing and loan solicitation and origination.
Violations of applicable consumer protection laws and regulations can result in significant potential liability from litigation brought by customers, including actual damages, restitution and attorneys’ fees. Federal bank regulators, state attorneys general and state and local consumer protection agencies may also seek to enforce consumer protection requirements and obtain these and other remedies, including regulatory sanctions, customer rescission rights, and civil money penalties. Failure to comply with consumer protection requirements may also result in our failure to obtain required bank regulatory approvals for transactions the Bank may wish to pursue, or prohibit us from engaging in such transactions even if approval is not required.
Bank Secrecy Act / Anti-Money Laundering Laws
The Bank is subject to the Bank Secrecy Act and other anti-money laundering laws and regulations, including the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001. The USA PATRIOT Act created new laws, regulations, and penalties, imposed significant new compliance and due diligence obligations, and expanded the application of those laws outside the U.S. Additionally, like all U.S. companies and individuals, the Company is prohibited from transacting business with certain individuals and entities named on the Office of Foreign Asset Control’s list of Specially Designed Nationals and Blocked Persons.
The Bank has been required to implement policies, procedures, and controls to detect, prevent, and report potential money laundering and terrorist financing and to verify the identity of its customers. The Company maintains procedures and systems to identify its customers, and to monitor and block transactions related to prohibited persons and entities. Violations of these requirements can result in substantial civil and criminal sanctions. In addition, the federal financial institution regulatory agencies consider the effectiveness of a financial institution’s anti-money laundering activities when reviewing bank mergers and BHC acquisitions.
As of December 31, 2018, we employed 2,122 full-time equivalent employees.
Listed below are executive officers of the Parent as of December 31, 2018.
Peter S. Ho, 53 Chairman and Chief Executive Officer since July 2010 and President since April 2008.
Dean Y. Shigemura, 55
Vice Chair since December 2017, and Chief Financial Officer since March 2017; Senior Executive Vice President and Controller from August 2014 to February 2017; Senior Executive Vice President and Treasurer from May 2008 to July 2014.
Sharon M. Crofts, 53
Vice Chair, Client Solutions Group since April 2016; Vice Chair, Operations and Technology from October 2012 to March 2016.
Wayne Y. Hamano, 64
Vice Chair since December 2008 and Chief Commercial Officer since September 2007.
Kent T. Lucien, 65 Vice Chair and Chief Strategy Officer since March 2017; Vice Chair and Chief Financial Officer from April 2008 to February 2017.
James C. Polk, 52
Vice Chair, Consumer Lending and Deposit Product Group since September 2018 and Consumer and Residential Lending since April 2018; Vice Chair, Mortgage Banking from July 2017 to March 2018; Vice Chair, The Private Bank from June 2016 to June 2017; Senior Executive Vice President, Consumer Banking from January 2016 to May 2016; Senior Executive Vice President, Mortgage Banking from August 2014 to January 2016; Senior Executive Vice President, Commercial Banking from September 2010 to July 2014.
Mark A. Rossi, 69
Vice Chair, Chief Administrative Officer, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary since February 2007.
Mary E. Sellers, 62
Vice Chair and Chief Risk Officer since July 2005.
Brent T. Flygar, 51
Senior Vice President and Controller since March 2017.
There are a number of risks and uncertainties that could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations. We are subject to various risks resulting from changing economic, environmental, political, industry, business, financial and regulatory conditions. The risks and uncertainties described below are some of the important inherent risk factors that could affect our business and operations, although they are not the only risks that may have a material adverse effect on the Company.
Changes in business and economic conditions, in particular those of Hawaii, Guam and other Pacific Islands, could lead to lower revenue, lower asset quality, and lower earnings.
Unlike larger national or other regional banks that are more geographically diversified, our business and earnings are closely tied to the economies of Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. These local economies rely heavily on tourism, the U.S. military, real estate, construction, government, and other service-based industries. Lower visitor arrivals or spending, real or threatened acts of war or terrorism, increases in energy costs, the availability of affordable air transportation, climate change, natural disasters and adverse weather, public health issues including Asian air pollution, and Federal, State of Hawaii and local government budget issues may impact consumer and corporate spending. As a result, such events may contribute to a significant deterioration in general economic conditions in our markets which could adversely impact us and our customers’ operations.
General economic conditions in Hawaii remained healthy in 2018, led by a strong tourism industry, relatively low unemployment, rising real estate prices, and an active construction industry. However, deterioration of economic conditions, either locally, nationally, or internationally could adversely affect the quality of our assets, credit losses, and the demand for our products and services, which could lead to lower revenues and lower earnings. The level of visitor arrivals and spending, housing prices, and unemployment rates are some of the metrics that we continually monitor. We also monitor the value of collateral, such as real estate, that secures the loans we have made. The borrowing power of our customers could also be negatively impacted by a decline in the value of collateral.
Any reduction in defense spending by the federal government could adversely impact the economy in Hawaii and the Pacific Islands.
The U.S. military has a major presence in Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. As a result, the U.S. military is an important aspect of the economies in which we operate. The funding of the U.S. military is subject to the overall U.S. Government budget and appropriation decisions and processes which are driven by numerous factors, including geo-political events, macroeconomic conditions, and the ability and willingness of the U.S. Government to enact legislation. U.S. Government appropriations have been and likely will continue to be affected by larger U.S. Government budgetary issues and related legislation. Cuts in defense and other security spending could have an adverse impact on the economies in which we operate, which could adversely affect our business, financial condition, and results of operations.
Changes in interest rates could adversely impact our results of operations and capital.
Our earnings are highly dependent on the spread between the interest earned on loans, leases, and investment securities and the interest paid on deposits and borrowings. We primarily rely on customer deposits as a sizable source of relatively stable and low-cost funds. Changes in market interest rates impact the rates earned on loans, leases, and investment securities and the rates paid on deposits and borrowings. In addition, changes to market interest rates could impact the level of loans, leases, investment securities, deposits, and borrowings, and the credit profile of our current borrowers. Interest rates are affected by many factors beyond our control, and fluctuate in response to general economic conditions, currency fluctuations, and the monetary and fiscal policies of various governmental and regulatory authorities.
Changes in monetary policy, including changes in interest rates, will influence the origination of loans and leases, the purchase of investments, the generation of deposits, and the rates received on loans and investment securities and paid on deposits. Any substantial prolonged change in market interest rates may negatively impact our ability to attract deposits, originate loans and leases, and achieve satisfactory interest rate spreads. If we are unable to continue to fund loans and other assets through customer deposits or access capital markets on favorable terms or if we otherwise fail to manage our liquidity effectively, our liquidity, net interest margin, financial results and conditions may be adversely affected.
The Company’s business and earnings are significantly affected by the fiscal and monetary policies of the Federal Government and its agencies. The Bank is particularly affected by the policies of the Federal Reserve, which regulates the supply of money and credit in the United States. Among the instruments of monetary policy available to the Federal Reserve are (a) conducting open market operations in U.S. government securities, (b) changing the discount rates of borrowings of depository institutions, (c) imposing or changing reserve requirements against depository institutions’ deposits, and (d) imposing or changing reserve requirements against certain borrowings by banks and their affiliates. These methods are used in varying degrees and combinations to directly affect the availability of bank loans and deposits, as well as the interest rates charged on loans and paid on deposits. Changes to these policies of the Federal Reserve may have a material effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.
Credit losses could increase if economic conditions stagnate or deteriorate.
Although economic conditions are currently healthy nationally and in Hawaii, increased credit losses for us could result if economic conditions stagnate or deteriorate. The risk of nonpayment on loans and leases is inherent in all lending activities. We maintain a reserve for credit losses to absorb estimated probable credit losses inherent in the loan, lease, and commitment portfolios as of the balance sheet date. Management makes various assumptions and judgments about the loan and lease portfolio in determining the level of the reserve for credit losses. Many of these assumptions are based on current economic conditions. Should economic conditions stagnate or deteriorate nationally or in Hawaii, we may experience higher credit losses in future periods.
Inability of our borrowers to make timely repayments on their loans, or decreases in real estate collateral values may result in increased delinquencies, foreclosures, and customer bankruptcies, any of which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.
Legislation and regulatory initiatives affecting the financial services industry, including new interpretations, restrictions and requirements, could detrimentally affect the Company’s business.
The Dodd-Frank Act, enacted in July 2010, triggered sweeping reforms to the financial services industry. Although almost all of the rules and regulations implementing the Dodd-Frank Act have already gone into effect, some of the rules have yet to be implemented and others are being interpreted by federal regulators and the courts. The Dodd-Frank Act, other consumer protection laws, and their implementing rules and regulations are likely to continue to result in increased compliance costs, along with possible restrictions on our products, services and manner of operations, any of which may have a material adverse effect on our operating results and financial condition.
The CFPB has exercised its broad rule-making, supervisory, and examination authority of consumer financial products, as well as expanded data collection and enforcement powers, over depository institutions with more than $10.0 billion in assets. Regulation of overall safety and soundness, the CRA, federal housing and flood insurance, as they pertain to consumer financial products and services, remains with the FRB. As a result of greater regulatory scrutiny of consumer financial products as a whole, the Company has become subject to more and expanded regulatory examinations, which also could result in increased costs as well as harm to our reputation in the event of a finding that we have not complied with the increased regulatory requirements.
New laws, regulations, and changes, and the uncertainty surrounding whether such laws, regulations and changes will be implemented, interpreted, repealed or reinstated, in the current regulatory and political climate, may continue to increase our costs of regulatory compliance. They may significantly affect the markets in which we do business, the markets for and value of our investments, and our ongoing operations, costs, and profitability.
Changes in the capital, leverage, liquidity requirements for financial institutions could materially affect future requirements of the Company.
Under Basel III, financial institutions are required to have more capital and a higher quality of capital. Under the final rules issued by the banking regulators, minimum requirements increased for both the quantity and quality of capital held by the Company.
Compliance with Basel III may result in increased capital, liquidity, and disclosure requirements. See the “Regulatory Initiatives Affecting the Banking Industry” section in MD&A for more information.
Consumer protection initiatives and court decisions related to the foreclosure process could affect our remedies as a creditor.
Proposed consumer protection initiatives related to the foreclosure process, including voluntary and/or mandatory programs intended to permit or require lenders to consider loan modifications or other alternatives to foreclosure, could increase our credit losses or increase our expense in pursuing our remedies as a creditor.
In addition, Hawaii’s appellate courts have made rulings that increase the complexity and risk of nonjudicial, or out-of-court, foreclosures. At the same time, a chronic backlog of cases in the Hawaii courts has slowed the judicial foreclosure process, which may significantly delay the Bank’s ability to take over, preserve and sell the mortgaged property. The manner in which these issues are ultimately resolved could impact our foreclosure procedures and costs, which in turn could affect our financial condition or results of operations.
Competition may adversely affect our business.
Our future depends on our ability to compete effectively. We compete for deposits, loans, leases, and other financial services with a variety of competitors, including banks, thrifts, savings associations, credit unions, mortgage companies, finance companies, mutual funds, brokerage firms, insurance companies, and other non-traditional providers of financial services, including financial service subsidiaries of commercial and manufacturing companies. Some of our competitors are not subject to the same level of regulation and oversight that is required of banks and BHCs, and may benefit from tax exemptions or lower tax rates. As a result, some of these competitors may have lower cost structures.
We expect competitive conditions to intensify as consolidation in the financial services industry continues. The financial services industry is also likely to become more competitive as further technological advances enable more companies, including non-depository institutions, to provide financial services. Also, some of our competitors, through delivery channels such as the Internet, may be based outside of the markets that we serve.
Both federal and local laws provide mechanisms for out-of-state banks and their holding companies to acquire or open branches in our service territories. Failure to effectively address this competitive risk by competing, innovating and making effective use of new and existing channels to deliver our products and services could adversely affect our financial condition or results of operations.
A failure in or breach of our operational systems, information systems, or infrastructure, or those of our third party vendors and other service providers, may result in financial losses, loss of customers, or damage to our reputation.
We rely heavily on communications and information systems to conduct our business. In addition, we rely on third parties to provide key components of our infrastructure, including loan, deposit and general ledger processing, internet connections, and network access. These types of information and related systems are critical to the operation of our business and essential to our ability to perform day-to-day operations, and, in some cases, are critical to the operations of certain of our customers. These third parties with which we do business or that facilitate our business activities, including exchanges, clearing firms, financial intermediaries or vendors that provide services or security solutions for our operations, could also be sources of operational and information security risk to us, including breakdowns or failures of their own systems or capacity constraints. Although we have safeguards and business continuity plans in place, our business operations may be adversely affected by significant and widespread disruption to our physical infrastructure or operating systems that support our business and our customers, resulting in financial losses, loss of customers, or damage to our reputation.
An interruption or breach in security of our information systems or those related to merchants and third party vendors, including as a result of cyber attacks, could disrupt our business, result in the disclosure or misuse of confidential or proprietary information, damage our reputation, or result in financial losses.
Our business requires the collection and retention of large volumes of customer data, including payment card numbers and other personally identifiable information in various information systems that we maintain and in those maintained by third parties with whom we contract to provide data services. We also maintain important internal company data such as personally identifiable information about our employees and information relating to our operations. The integrity and protection of that customer and company data is important to us. As customer, public, legislative and regulatory expectations and requirements regarding operational and information security have increased, our operations systems and infrastructure must continue to be safeguarded and monitored for potential failures, disruptions and breakdowns.
Our technologies, systems, networks and software, and those of other financial institutions have been, and are likely to continue to be, the target of cybersecurity threats and attacks, which may range from uncoordinated individual attempts to sophisticated and targeted measures directed at us. These cybersecurity threats and attacks may include, but are not limited to, attempts to access information, including customer and company information, malicious code, computer viruses and denial of service attacks that could result in unauthorized access, misuse, loss or destruction of data (including confidential customer information), account takeovers, unavailability of service or other events. These types of threats may result from human error, fraud or malice on the part of external or internal parties, intelligence-gathering by foreign governments, or from accidental technological failure internally or by our vendors. Further, to access our products and services our customers may use computers and mobile devices that are beyond our security control systems. The risk of a security breach or disruption, particularly through cyber-attack or cyber intrusion, including by computer hackers, has increased as the number, intensity and sophistication of attempted attacks and intrusions around the world have increased.
Our customers and employees have been, and will continue to be, targeted by parties using fraudulent E-mails and other communications in attempts to misappropriate passwords, payment card numbers, bank account information or other personal information or to introduce viruses or other malware through “trojan horse” programs to our customers’ computers. These communications may appear to be legitimate messages sent by the Bank or other businesses, but direct recipients to fake websites operated by the sender of the E-mail or request that the recipient send a password or other confidential information via E-mail or download a program. Despite our efforts to mitigate these threats through product improvements, use of encryption and authentication technology to secure online transmission of confidential consumer information, and customer and employee education, such attempted frauds against us or our merchants and our third party service providers remain a serious issue. The pervasiveness of cyber security incidents in general and the risks of cyber-crime are complex and continue to evolve. In light of several recent high-profile data breaches involving other companies’ losses of customer personal and financial information, we believe this risk could cause customer and/or Bank losses, damage to our brand, and increase our costs through the ongoing cost of technology investments to improve security, as well as the potential financial ad reputational impact of a cyber security incident involving the Company.
Although we make significant efforts to maintain the security and integrity of our information systems and have implemented various measures to manage the risk of a security breach or disruption, there can be no assurance that our security efforts and measures will be effective or that attempted security breaches or disruptions would not be successful or damaging. Even the most well-protected information, networks, systems and facilities remain potentially vulnerable because attempted security breaches, particularly cyber-attacks and intrusions, or disruptions will occur in the future, and because the techniques used in such attempts are constantly evolving and generally are not recognized until launched against a target, and in some cases are designed not to be detected and, in fact, may not be detected. Accordingly, we may be unable to anticipate these techniques or to implement adequate security barriers or other preventative measures, and thus it is virtually impossible for us to entirely mitigate this risk. A security breach or other significant disruption could: 1) disrupt the proper functioning of our networks and systems and therefore our operations and/or those of certain of our customers; 2) result in the unauthorized access to, and destruction, loss, theft, misappropriation or release of confidential, sensitive or otherwise valuable information of ours or our customers, including account numbers and other financial information; 3) result in a violation of applicable privacy, data breach and other laws, subjecting the Bank to additional regulatory scrutiny and exposing the Bank to civil litigation, governmental fines and possible financial liability; 4) require significant management attention and resources to remedy the damages that result; or 5) harm our reputation or cause a decrease in the number of customers that choose to do business with us or reduce the level of business that our customers do with us. The occurrence of any such failures, disruptions or security breaches could have a negative impact on our results of operations, financial condition, and cash flows as well as damage our brand and reputation.
Negative public opinion could damage our reputation and adversely impact our earnings and liquidity.
Reputational risk, or the risk to our business, earnings, liquidity, and capital from negative public opinion, could result from our actual or alleged conduct in a variety of areas, including legal and regulatory compliance, lending practices, corporate governance, litigation, ethical issues, or inadequate protection of customer information. We expend significant resources to comply with regulatory requirements. Failure to comply could result in reputational harm or significant legal or remedial costs. Damage to our reputation could adversely affect our ability to retain and attract new customers, and adversely impact our earnings and liquidity.
We are subject to certain litigation, and our expenses related to this litigation may adversely affect our results.
We are, from time-to-time, involved in various legal proceedings arising from our normal business activities. These claims and legal actions, including supervisory actions by our regulators, could involve large monetary claims and significant defense costs. The outcome of these cases is uncertain. Substantial legal liability or significant regulatory action against us could have material financial effects or cause significant reputational harm to us, which in turn could seriously harm our business prospects. We may be exposed to substantial uninsured liabilities, which could materially affect our results of operations and financial condition. Based on information currently available, we believe that the eventual outcome of known actions against us will not be materially in excess of such amounts accrued by us. However, in the event of unexpected future developments, it is possible that the ultimate resolution of those matters may be material to our financial results for any particular period. See the Contingencies section of Note 20 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for more information.
Changes in income tax laws and interpretations, or in accounting standards, could materially affect our financial condition or results of operations.
Further changes in income tax laws could be enacted, or interpretations of existing income tax laws could change, causing an adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations. Similarly, our accounting policies and methods are fundamental to how we report our financial condition and results of operations. Some of these policies require use of estimates and assumptions that may affect the value of our assets, liabilities, and financial results. Periodically, new accounting standards are issued or existing standards are revised, changing the methods for preparing our financial statements. These changes are not within our control and may significantly impact our financial condition and results of operations.
Our performance depends on attracting and retaining key employees and skilled personnel to operate our business effectively.
Our success is dependent on our ability to recruit qualified and skilled personnel to operate our business effectively. Competition for these qualified and skilled people is intense. There are a limited number of qualified personnel in the markets we serve, so our success depends in part on the continued services of many of our current management and other key employees. Failure to retain our key employees and maintain adequate staffing of qualified personnel could adversely impact our operations and our ability to compete.
The soundness of other financial institutions may adversely impact our financial condition or results of operations.
Our ability to engage in routine funding transactions could be adversely affected by the actions and commercial soundness of other financial institutions. Financial services institutions are interrelated as a result of trading, clearing, lending, counterparty, or other relationships. As a result, defaults by, or even rumors or questions about, one or more financial services institutions or the financial services industry in general have led to market-wide liquidity problems and could lead to losses or defaults by us or by other institutions. We have exposure to many different industries and counterparties, and we routinely execute transactions with brokers and dealers, commercial banks, investment banks, mutual funds, and other institutional clients. Many of these transactions expose us to credit risk in the event of default of our counterparty or client. In addition, our credit risk may be exacerbated when the collateral held by us cannot be realized upon or is liquidated at prices not sufficient to recover the full amount of the loan or derivative exposure due us. Such losses could materially affect our financial condition or results of operations.
Changes in the capital markets could materially affect the level of assets under management and the demand for our other fee-based services.
Changes in the capital markets could affect the volume of income from and demand for our fee-based services. Our investment management revenues depend in large part on the level of assets under management. Market volatility that leads customers to liquidate investments, move investments to other institutions or asset classes, as well as lower asset values can reduce our level of assets under management and thereby decrease our investment management revenues.
Our mortgage banking income may experience significant volatility.
Our mortgage banking income is highly influenced by the level and direction of mortgage interest rates, real estate activity, and refinancing activity. Interest rates can affect the amount of mortgage banking activity and impact fee income and the fair value of our derivative financial instruments and mortgage servicing rights. Mortgage banking income may also be impacted by changes in our strategy to manage our residential mortgage portfolio. For example, we may occasionally decide to add more conforming saleable loans to our portfolio (as opposed to selling the loans in the secondary market) which would reduce our gains on sales of residential mortgage loans. These variables could adversely affect mortgage banking income.
Our mortgage loan servicing business may be impacted if we do not meet our obligations, or if servicing standards change.
We act as servicer for mortgage loans sold into the secondary market, primarily to government sponsored entities (GSEs) such as Fannie Mae. As a seller and servicer for those loans, we make warranties about their origination and are required to perform servicing according to complex contractual and handbook requirements. We maintain systems and procedures intended to ensure that we comply with these requirements. We may be penalized and, in limited instances required to repurchase certain mortgages, due to alleged failures to adhere to these requirements. Should GSEs change the requirements in their servicing handbooks, we may sustain higher compliance costs.
The requirement to record certain assets and liabilities at fair value may adversely affect our financial results.
We report certain assets, including available-for-sale investment securities, at fair value. Generally, for assets that are reported at fair value we use quoted market prices or valuation models that utilize market data inputs to estimate fair value. Because we record these assets at their estimated fair value, we may incur losses even if the asset in question presents minimal credit risk. The level of interest rates can impact the estimated fair value of investment securities. Disruptions in the capital markets may require us to recognize other-than-temporary impairments in future periods with respect to investment securities in our portfolio. The amount and timing of any impairment recognized will depend on the severity and duration of the decline in fair value of our investment securities and our estimation of the anticipated recovery period.
The Parent’s liquidity is dependent on dividends from the Bank.
The Parent is a separate and distinct legal entity from the Bank. The Parent receives substantially all of its cash in the form of dividends from the Bank. These dividends are the principal source of funds to pay, for example, dividends on the Parent’s common stock or to repurchase common stock under the Parent’s share repurchase program. Various federal and state laws and regulations limit the amount of dividends that the Bank may pay to the Parent. If the amount of dividends paid by the Bank is further limited, the Parent’s ability to meet its obligations, pay dividends to shareholders, or repurchase stock, may be further limited as well.
There can be no assurance that the Parent will continue to declare cash dividends or repurchase stock.
During 2018, the Parent repurchased 1,079,397 shares of common stock at a total cost of $88.3 million under its share repurchase program. The Parent also paid cash dividends of $98.5 million during 2018. In January 2019, the Parent’s Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.62 per share on the Parent’s outstanding shares. In addition, from January 1, 2019 through February 15, 2019, the Parent repurchased an additional 298,500 shares of common stock at an average cost of $75.46 per share and a total cost of $22.5 million.
Our dividend payments and/or stock repurchases may change from time-to-time, and we cannot provide assurance that we will continue to declare dividends and/or repurchase stock in any particular amounts or at all. Dividends and/or stock repurchases are subject to capital availability and periodic determinations by our Board of Directors. We continue to evaluate the potential impact that regulatory proposals may have on our liquidity and capital management strategies, including Basel III and those required under the Dodd-Frank Act. The actual amount and timing of future dividends and share repurchases, if any, will depend on market and economic conditions, applicable SEC rules, federal and state regulatory restrictions, and various other factors. In addition, the amount we spend and the number of shares we are able to repurchase under our stock repurchase program may further be affected by a number of other factors, including the stock price and blackout periods in which we are restricted from repurchasing shares. A reduction in or elimination of our dividend payments and/or stock repurchases could have a negative effect on our stock price.
Natural disasters and adverse weather could negatively affect real estate property values and bank operations.
Real estate and real estate property values play an important role for the Bank in several ways. The Bank owns or leases many real estate properties in connection with its operations, primarily located in Hawaii with its unique weather and geology. Our business operations could suffer to the extent the Bank cannot utilize its branch network due to damage from weather or other natural disasters. Real estate is also utilized as collateral for many of our loans. A natural disaster in Hawaii or the Pacific Islands could cause property values in the affected areas to fall, which could require the Bank to record an impairment on its financial statements. A natural disaster could also impact borrowers’ ability to pay their financial obligations, which would increase our exposure to loan defaults.
Our principal offices are located in the Financial Plaza of the Pacific in Honolulu, Hawaii. We own and lease other branch offices and operating facilities located throughout Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. Additional information with respect to premises and equipment is presented in Notes 6 and 20 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Item 3. Legal Proceedings
We are from time to time subject to lawsuits, investigations and claims arising out of the conduct of our business. Management believes that the ultimate resolution of these matters is not likely to materially affect our financial position and results of operations. For additional information, see Note 20 to the Consolidated Financial Statements, under the discussion related to Contingencies.
Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Market Information, Shareholders, and Dividends
Information regarding the historical market prices of the Parent’s common stock, book value, and dividends declared on that stock are shown below.
Market Prices, Book Values, and Common Stock Dividends Per Share
Market Price Range
The common stock of the Parent is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE Symbol: BOH) and quoted daily in leading financial publications. As of February 15, 2019, there were 5,773 common shareholders of record.
The Parent’s Board of Directors considers on a quarterly basis the feasibility of paying a cash dividend to its shareholders and the level and feasibility of repurchasing shares of the Parent’s common stock. Under the Parent’s historical practice, dividends declared are paid within the quarter. See “Dividend Restrictions” under “Supervision and Regulation” in Item 1 of this report and Note 11 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for more information.
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Total Number of Shares Purchased 1
Average Price Paid Per Share
Total Number of Shares Purchased as Part of Publicly Announced Plans or Programs
Approximate Dollar Value of Shares that May Yet Be Purchased Under the Plans or Programs 2
October 1 - 31, 2018
November 1 - 30, 2018
December 1 - 31, 2018
1 During the fourth quarter of 2018, 1,742 shares were acquired from employees in connection with income tax withholdings related to the vesting of restricted stock and acquired by the trustee of a trust established pursuant to the Bank of Hawaii Corporation Director Deferred Compensation Plan (the “DDCP”) directly from the Parent in satisfaction of the Company’s obligations to participants under the DDCP. The issuance of these shares was made in reliance upon the exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”) by Section 4(a)(2) thereof. The trustee under the trust and the participants under the DDCP are accredited investors, as defined in Rule 501(a) under the Securities Act. The transaction did not involve a public offering and occurred without general solicitation or advertising. The shares were purchased at the closing price of the Parent’s common stock on the dates of purchase.
2 The share repurchase program was first announced in July 2001. The program has no set expiration or termination date. The actual amount and timing of future share repurchases, if any, will depend on market and economic conditions, regulatory rules, applicable SEC rules, and various other factors.
The following graph shows the cumulative total return for the Parent’s common stock compared to the cumulative total returns for the Standard & Poor’s (“S&P”) 500 Index and the S&P Banks Index. The graph assumes that $100 was invested on December 31, 2013 in the Parent’s common stock, the S&P 500 Index, and the S&P Banks Index. The cumulative total return on each investment is as of December 31 of each of the subsequent five years and assumes reinvestment of dividends.
The ratios “tangible common equity to tangible assets” and “tangible common equity to risk-weighted assets” are Non-GAAP financial measures. The Company believes these measurements are useful for investors, regulators, management and others to evaluate capital adequacy relative to other financial institutions. Although these Non-GAAP financial measures are frequently used by stakeholders in the evaluation of a company, they have limitations as analytical tools, and should not be considered in isolation, or as a substitute for analyses of results as reported under GAAP. The following table provides a reconciliation of these Non-GAAP financial measures with their most closely related GAAP measures.
GAAP to Non-GAAP Reconciliation
(dollars in thousands)
Total Shareholders’ Equity
Tangible Common Equity
Risk-Weighted Assets, determined in accordance with prescribed regulatory requirements 1
Total Shareholders’ Equity to Total Assets
Tangible Common Equity to Tangible Assets (Non-GAAP)
Tier 1 Capital Ratio 1
Tangible Common Equity to Risk-Weighted Assets (Non-GAAP) 1
1 December 31, 2018, 2017, 2016, and 2015 calculated under Basel III rules, which became effective January 1, 2015.
Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
This report contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts and may include statements concerning, among other things, the anticipated economic and business environment in our service area and elsewhere, credit quality and other financial and business matters in future periods, our future results of operations and financial position, our business strategy and plans and our objectives and future operations. We also may make forward-looking statements in our other documents filed with or furnished to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”). In addition, our senior management may make forward-looking statements orally to analysts, investors, representatives of the media and others. Our forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions, any of which could prove to be inaccurate, and actual results may differ materially from those projected because of a variety of risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to: 1) general economic conditions either nationally, internationally, or locally may be different than expected, and particularly, any event that negatively impacts the tourism industry in Hawaii; 2) unanticipated changes in the securities markets, public debt markets, and other capital markets in the U.S. and internationally; 3) competitive pressures in the markets for financial services and products; 4) the impact of legislative and regulatory initiatives, particularly the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (the “Dodd-Frank Act”) and Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act of 2018; 5) changes in fiscal and monetary policies of the markets in which we operate; 6) the increased cost of maintaining or the Company’s ability to maintain adequate liquidity and capital, based on the requirements adopted by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and U.S. regulators; 7) actual or alleged conduct which could harm our reputation; 8) changes in accounting standards; 9) changes in tax laws or regulations, including Public Law 115-97, commonly known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, or the interpretation of such laws and regulations; 10) changes in our credit quality or risk profile that may increase or decrease the required level of our reserve for credit losses; 11) changes in market interest rates that may affect credit markets and our ability to maintain our net interest margin; 12) the impact of litigation and regulatory investigations of the Company, including costs, expenses, settlements, and judgments; 13) any failure in or breach of our operational systems, information systems or infrastructure, or those of our merchants, third party vendors and other service providers; 14) any interruption or breach of security of our information systems resulting in failures or disruptions in customer account management, general ledger processing, and loan or deposit systems; 15) changes to the amount and timing of proposed common stock repurchases; and 16) natural disasters, public unrest or adverse weather, public health, and other conditions impacting us and our customers’ operations or negatively impacting the tourism industry in Hawaii. Given these risks and uncertainties, investors should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statement as a prediction of our actual results. A detailed discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from such forward-looking statements is included under the section entitled “Risk Factors” in Part I of this report. Words such as “believes,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “intends,” “targeted,” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements but are not the exclusive means of identifying such statements. We undertake no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect later events or circumstances, except as may be required by law.
Critical Accounting Policies
Our Consolidated Financial Statements were prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) and follow general practices within the industries in which we operate. The most significant accounting policies we follow are presented in Note 1 to the Consolidated Financial Statements. Application of these principles requires us to make estimates, assumptions, and judgments that affect the amounts reported in the Consolidated Financial Statements and accompanying notes. Most accounting policies are not considered by management to be critical accounting policies. Several factors are considered in determining whether or not a policy is critical in the preparation of the Consolidated Financial Statements. These factors include among other things, whether the policy requires management to make difficult, subjective, and complex judgments about matters that are inherently uncertain and because it is likely that materially different amounts would be reported under different conditions or using different assumptions. The accounting policies which we believe to be most critical in preparing our Consolidated Financial Statements are those that are related to the determination of the reserve for credit losses, fair value estimates, leased asset residual values, and income taxes.
A consequence of lending activities is that we may incur credit losses. The amount of such losses will vary depending upon the risk characteristics of the loan and lease portfolio as affected by economic conditions such as rising interest rates and the financial performance of borrowers. The reserve for credit losses consists of the allowance for loan and lease losses (the “Allowance”) and the reserve for unfunded commitments (the “Unfunded Reserve”). The Allowance provides for probable and estimable losses inherent in our loan and lease portfolio. The Allowance is increased or decreased through the provisioning process. There is no exact method of predicting specific losses or amounts that ultimately may be charged-off on particular segments of the loan and lease portfolio. The Unfunded Reserve is a component of other liabilities and represents the estimate for probable credit losses inherent in unfunded commitments to extend credit. The level of the Unfunded Reserve is adjusted by recording an expense or recovery in other noninterest expense.
Management’s evaluation of the adequacy of the reserve for credit losses is often the most critical of accounting estimates for a financial institution. Our determination of the amount of the reserve for credit losses is a critical accounting estimate as it requires significant reliance on the accuracy of credit risk ratings on individual borrowers, the use of estimates and significant judgment as to the amount and timing of expected future cash flows on impaired loans, significant reliance on estimated loss rates on homogenous portfolios, and consideration of our quantitative and qualitative evaluation of economic factors and trends. While our methodology in establishing the reserve for credit losses attributes portions of the Allowance and Unfunded Reserve to the commercial and consumer portfolio segments, the entire Allowance and Unfunded Reserve is available to absorb credit losses inherent in the total loan and lease portfolio and total amount of unfunded credit commitments, respectively.
The reserve for credit losses related to our commercial portfolio segment is generally most sensitive to the accuracy of credit risk ratings assigned to each borrower. Commercial loan risk ratings are evaluated based on each situation by experienced senior credit officers and are subject to periodic review by an independent internal team of credit specialists. The reserve for credit losses related to our consumer portfolio segment is generally most sensitive to economic assumptions and delinquency trends. The reserve for credit losses attributable to each portfolio segment also includes an amount for inherent risks not reflected in the historical analyses. Relevant factors include, but are not limited to, concentrations of credit risk (geographic, large borrower, and industry), economic trends and conditions, changes in underwriting standards, experience and depth of lending staff, trends in delinquencies, and the level of criticized and classified loans.
See Note 4 to the Consolidated Financial Statements and the “Corporate Risk Profile – Credit Risk” section in Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations (“MD&A”) for more information on the Allowance and the Unfunded Reserve.
Fair Value Measurements
Fair value is the price that would be received to sell an asset or paid to transfer a liability in the principal or most advantageous market for an asset or liability in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date. The degree of management judgment involved in determining the fair value of a financial instrument is dependent upon the availability of quoted market prices or observable market inputs. For financial instruments that are traded actively and have quoted market prices or observable market inputs, there is minimal subjectivity involved in measuring fair value. However, when quoted market prices or observable market inputs are not fully available, significant management judgment may be necessary to estimate fair value. In developing our fair value measurements, we maximize the use of observable inputs and minimize the use of unobservable inputs.
The fair value hierarchy defines Level 1 valuations as those based on quoted prices, unadjusted, for identical instruments traded in active markets. Level 2 valuations are those based on quoted prices for similar instruments in active markets, quoted prices for identical or similar instruments in markets that are not active, or model-based valuation techniques for which all significant assumptions are observable in the market. Level 3 valuations are based on model-based techniques that use at least one significant assumption not observable in the market, or significant management judgment or estimation, some of which may be internally developed.
Financial assets that are recorded at fair value on a recurring basis include available-for-sale investment securities, loans held for sale, mortgage servicing rights, investments related to deferred compensation arrangements, and derivative financial instruments. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, $2.1 billion or 12% and $2.3 billion or 13%, respectively, of our total assets consisted of financial assets recorded at fair value on a recurring basis and most of these financial assets consisted of available-for-sale investment securities measured using information from a third-party pricing service. These investments in debt securities and mortgage-backed securities were all classified in either Levels 1 or 2 of the fair value hierarchy. Financial liabilities that are recorded at fair value on a recurring basis are comprised of derivative financial instruments. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, $9.7 million or less than 1% of our total liabilities consisted of financial liabilities recorded at fair value on a recurring basis. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, Level 3 financial assets recorded at fair value on a recurring basis were $15.1 million and $11.8 million, respectively, or less than 1% of our total assets, and were comprised of mortgage servicing rights and derivative financial instruments. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, Level 3 financial liabilities recorded at fair value on a recurring basis were $9.4 million and $9.5 million, respectively, or less than 1% of our total liabilities, and were comprised of derivative financial instruments.
Our third-party pricing service makes no representations or warranties that the pricing data provided to us is complete or free from errors, omissions, or defects. As a result, we have processes in place to monitor and periodically review the information provided to us by our third-party pricing service such as: 1) Our third-party pricing service provides us with documentation by asset class of inputs and methodologies used to value securities. We review this documentation to evaluate the inputs and valuation methodologies used to place securities into the appropriate level of the fair value hierarchy. This documentation is periodically updated by our third-party pricing service. Accordingly, transfers of securities within the fair value hierarchy are made if deemed necessary. 2) On a quarterly basis, management also selects a sample of securities priced by the Company’s third-party pricing service and reviews the significant assumptions and valuation methodologies used by the pricing service with respect to those securities. The information provided is comprised of market reference data, which may include reported trades; bids, offers, or broker-dealer dealer quotes; benchmark yields and spreads; as well as other reference data as appropriate. Periodically, based on these reviews, management determines whether the current placement of the security in the fair value hierarchy is appropriate or whether transfers may be warranted. 3) On a quarterly basis, management reviews the pricing information received from our third-party pricing service. This review process includes a comparison to a second source. 4) Our third-party pricing service has also established processes for us to submit inquiries regarding quoted prices. Periodically, we will challenge the quoted prices provided by our third-party pricing service. Our third-party pricing service will review the inputs to the evaluation in light of the new market data presented by us. Our third-party pricing service may then affirm the original quoted price or may update the evaluation on a going forward basis. Generally, we do not adjust the price from the third-party service provider. 5) On an annual basis, we obtain and review the third-party’s most recently issued Service Organization Controls report. related to controls placed in operation and tests of operating effectiveness, to update our understanding of the third-party pricing service’s control environment.
Based on the composition of our investment securities portfolio, we believe that we have developed appropriate internal controls and performed appropriate due diligence procedures to prevent or detect material misstatements. See Note 21 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for more information on our fair value measurements.
We determine our liabilities for income taxes based on current tax regulations and interpretations in tax jurisdictions where our income is subject to taxation. Currently, we file tax returns in seven federal, state and local domestic jurisdictions, and four foreign jurisdictions. In estimating income taxes payable or receivable, we assess the relative merits and risks of the appropriate tax treatment considering statutory, judicial, and regulatory guidance in the context of each tax position. Accordingly, previously estimated liabilities are regularly reevaluated and adjusted through the provision for income taxes. Changes in the estimate of income taxes payable or receivable occur periodically due to changes in tax rates, interpretations of tax law, the status of examinations being conducted by various taxing authorities, and newly enacted statutory, judicial and regulatory guidance that impact the relative merits and risks of each tax position. These changes, when they occur, may affect the provision for income taxes as well as current and deferred income taxes, and may be significant to our statements of income and condition.
Management's determination of the realization of net deferred tax assets is based upon management's judgment of various future events and uncertainties, including the timing and amount of future income, as well as the implementation of various tax planning strategies to maximize realization of the deferred tax assets. A valuation allowance is provided when it is more likely than not that some portion of the deferred tax asset will not be realized. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, we carried a valuation allowance of $1.1 million and $1.0 million, respectively, related to our deferred tax assets established in connection with our low-income housing investments.
We are also required to record a liability, referred to as an unrecognized tax benefit ("UTB"), for the entire amount of benefit taken in a prior or future income tax return when we determine that a tax position has a less than 50% likelihood of being accepted by the taxing authority. As of December 31, 2018 and 2017, our liabilities for UTBs were $5.5 million and $5.3 million, respectively.
In 2018, the Company recognized federal and State of Hawaii investment tax credits from energy investments. The Company uses the deferral method of accounting for its investment tax credit with the benefit recognized in the provision for income taxes. These credits reduced the Company's provision for income taxes by $5.0 million, 5.4 million, and 4.7 million in 2018, 2017 and 2016, respectively.
Public law No. 115-97, known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the "Tax Act"), which was enacted on December 22, 2017, reduced the U.S. federal corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. Also on December 22, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 118 (“SAB 118”), which provides guidance on accounting for tax effects of the Tax Act. SAB 118 provides a measurement period of up to one year from the enactment date to complete the accounting. Any adjustments during this measurement period were included in net earnings from continuing operations as
an adjustment to income tax expense in the reporting period when such adjustments were determined. Based on the information available and current interpretation of the rules, the Company calculated the impact of the reduction in the corporate tax rate and remeasurement of certain deferred tax assets and liabilities. The provisional amount recorded in the fourth quarter of 2017 related to the remeasurement of the Company's deferred tax balance resulted in additional income tax expense of $3.6 million. An additional $0.1 million was expensed in the first quarter of 2018 due to the remeasurement of the Company’s deferred tax balance. In addition, during the first quarter of 2018, the Company recorded a $2.0 million basis adjustment on its low income
housing partnership investments, which consequently reduced income tax expense by the same amount. The remeasurement of the Company’s deferred tax balance in the third quarter of 2018 resulted in an income tax expense reduction of $0.3 million. The Company finalized the impact of the Tax Act in the third quarter of 2018.
We are a regional financial services company serving businesses, consumers, and governments in Hawaii, Guam, and other Pacific Islands. Our principal operating subsidiary, the Bank, was founded in 1897 and is the largest independent financial institution in Hawaii.
Our business strategy is to use our unique market knowledge, prudent management discipline and brand strength to deliver exceptional value to our stakeholders. Our business plan is balanced between growth and risk management while maintaining flexibility to adjust to economic changes. We will continue to focus on providing customers with best-in-class service and an innovative mix of products and services. We will also remain focused on continuing to deliver strong financial results while maintaining prudent risk and capital management strategies as well as our commitment to support our local communities.
General economic conditions in Hawaii remained healthy during 2018, led by a strong tourism industry, relatively low unemployment, rising real estate prices, and an active construction industry. Total visitor arrivals increased 5.9% and visitor spending increased 6.8% during 2018 compared to 2017. The statewide seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 2.5% in December 2018 compared to 3.9% nationally. The volume of single-family home sales on Oahu decreased 7.7% in 2018 compared to 2017, while the volume of condominium sales on Oahu decreased 2.5% in 2018 compared to 2017. The median price of single-family home sales and condominium sales on Oahu increased 4.6% and 3.7%, respectively, in 2018 compared to 2017. As of December 31, 2018, months of inventory of single-family homes and condominiums on Oahu remained low at approximately 2.8 months and 2.9 months, respectively.
Net income for 2018 was $219.6 million, an increase of $34.9 million or 19% compared to 2017. Diluted earnings per share were $5.23 in 2018, an increase of $0.90 or 21% compared to 2017. Our return on average assets was 1.29% in 2018, an increase of 19 basis points from 2017, and our return on average shareholders’ equity was 17.63% in 2018, an increase of 236 basis points from 2017.
Our higher net income in 2018 was primarily due to the following:
The provision for income taxes was $50.6 million in 2018, a decrease of $32.8 million or 39% compared to 2017 primarily due to the federal corporate tax rate changing from 35% to 21% as a result of the passage of the Tax Act. The effective tax rate was 18.73% in 2018 compared to 31.11% in 2017.
Net interest income was $486.4 million in 2018, an increase of $29.1 million or 6% compared to 2017. On a taxable-equivalent basis, net interest income was $491.5 million in 2018, an increase of $22.4 million or 5% compared to 2017. This increase was primarily due to a higher level of earning assets, including growth in both our commercial and consumer lending portfolios, and higher net interest margin. The higher level of earning assets was primarily funded by higher deposit balances. Net interest margin was 3.05% in 2018, a 12 basis point increase from 2017, primarily due to our loans, which generally have higher yields than our investment securities, comprising a larger percentage of our earning assets compared to 2017. In addition, yields increased for our commercial loans and investment portfolio. Yields on our loan portfolios increased primarily due to higher yields on floating rate loans. This was partially offset by an increase in rates offered on our deposit products.
We recorded a $13.4 million provision for credit losses in 2018 compared to a $16.9 million provision recorded in 2017. The provision recorded was based on our determination that the allowance for loan and lease losses should be $106.7 million as of December 31, 2018.
These items were partially offset by the following:
Investment securities gains (losses), net totaled $(3.9) million in 2018 compared to $10.4 million in 2017. The net losses in 2018 were due to fees paid to the counterparties of our prior Visa Class B share sale transactions combined with a $1.0 million payment related to a change in the Visa Class B share conversion ratio. The net gain in 2017 was primarily due the sale of 90,000 Visa Class B shares.
Salaries and benefits expense was $213.2 million in 2018, an increase of $9.5 million or 5% compared to 2017 primarily due to $9.8 million increase in merit and minimum wage increases. Medical, dental, and life insurance increased by $3.8 million primarily due to higher expenses related to our self-insured medical plans coupled with increased group medical insurance costs. These increases were partially offset by a $2.1 million decrease in incentive compensation. During the fourth quarter of 2017, the Company paid a $2.2 million bonus, inclusive of payroll taxes, partly due to anticipated future tax expense reductions resulting from the Tax Act. In addition, share-based compensation decreased by $2.1 million as a result of the Company’s lower share price. Commission expense also decreased by $2.1 million primarily due to a decrease in loan origination and refinancing activity.
Mortgage banking income was $8.4 million in 2018, a decrease of $4.5 million or 35% compared to 2017. This decrease was primarily due to reduced sales and margins on sales of conforming saleable loans from current production and from our mortgage loan portfolio.
We maintained a strong balance sheet throughout 2018, with what we believe are adequate reserves for credit losses, and high levels of liquidity and capital.
Total loans and leases were $10.4 billion as of December 31, 2018, an increase of $0.7 billion or 7% from December 31, 2017 primarily due to growth in our consumer lending portfolios.
The allowance for loan and lease losses (the “Allowance”) was $106.7 million as of December 31, 2018, a decrease of $0.7 million or 1% from December 31, 2017. The ratio of our Allowance to total loans and leases outstanding decreased to 1.02% as of December 31, 2018, compared to 1.10% as of December 31, 2017. The level of our Allowance was commensurate with the Company’s credit risk profile, loan portfolio growth and composition, and a healthy Hawaii economy.
The total carrying value of our investment securities portfolio was $5.5 billion as of December 31, 2018, a decrease of $671.1 million or 11% from December 31, 2017. In 2018, we reduced our positions primarily in mortgage-backed securities, municipal debt securities, and corporate debt securities. Government National Mortgage Corporation (“Ginnie Mae”) mortgage-backed securities continue to be our largest concentration in our portfolio.
Total deposits were $15.0 billion as of December 31, 2018, an increase of $0.1 billion or 1% from December 31, 2017 primarily due to higher consumer core and time deposits. These increases were partially offset by a decrease in public and other deposits largely due to the strategic decision to reduce public time deposits.
Total shareholders’ equity was $1.3 billion as of December 31, 2018, an increase of $36.3 million or 3% from December 31, 2017. We continued to return capital to our shareholders in the form of share repurchases and dividends. During 2018, we repurchased 1,120,755 shares of common stock at a total cost of $92.0 million under our share repurchase program and from employees and/or directors in connection with income tax withholdings related to the vesting of restricted stock, shares purchased for a deferred compensation plan, and stock swaps, less shares distributed from the deferred compensation plan. We also paid cash dividends of $98.5 million during 2018.
Average balances, related income and expenses, and resulting yields and rates are presented in Table 1. An analysis of the change in net interest income, on a taxable-equivalent basis, is presented in Table 2.
Average Balances and Interest Rates – Taxable-Equivalent Basis
(dollars in millions)
Interest-Bearing Deposits in Other Banks
Total Investment Securities
Loans Held for Sale
Loans and Leases 1
Commercial and Industrial
Commercial Lease Financing
Total Loans and Leases
Total Earning Assets 3
Cash and Due from Banks
Total Interest-Bearing Deposits
Securities Sold Under
Agreements to Repurchase
Total Interest-Bearing Liabilities
Net Interest Income
Interest Rate Spread
Net Interest Margin
Noninterest-Bearing Demand Deposits
Total Liabilities and Shareholders’
Non-performing loans and leases are included in the respective average loan and lease balances. Income, if any, on such loans and leases is recognized on a cash basis.
Comprised of other consumer revolving credit, installment, and consumer lease financing.
Interest income includes taxable-equivalent basis adjustments, based upon a federal statutory tax rate of 21% for 2018 and 35% for 2017 and 2016, of $5.2 million for 2018, $11.8 million for 2017, and $12.0 million for 2016.