Company Quick10K Filing
Hancock Whitney
Closing Price ($) Shares Out (MM) Market Cap ($MM)
$44.40 87 $3,860
10-K 2018-12-31 Annual: 2018-12-31
10-Q 2018-09-30 Quarter: 2018-09-30
10-Q 2018-06-30 Quarter: 2018-06-30
10-Q 2018-03-31 Quarter: 2018-03-31
10-K 2017-12-31 Annual: 2017-12-31
10-Q 2017-09-30 Quarter: 2017-09-30
10-Q 2017-06-30 Quarter: 2017-06-30
10-Q 2017-03-31 Quarter: 2017-03-31
10-K 2016-12-31 Annual: 2016-12-31
10-Q 2016-09-30 Quarter: 2016-09-30
10-Q 2016-06-30 Quarter: 2016-06-30
10-Q 2016-03-31 Quarter: 2016-03-31
10-K 2015-12-31 Annual: 2015-12-31
10-Q 2015-09-30 Quarter: 2015-09-30
10-Q 2015-06-30 Quarter: 2015-06-30
10-Q 2015-03-31 Quarter: 2015-03-31
10-K 2014-12-31 Annual: 2014-12-31
10-Q 2014-09-30 Quarter: 2014-09-30
10-Q 2014-06-30 Quarter: 2014-06-30
10-Q 2014-03-31 Quarter: 2014-03-31
10-K 2013-12-31 Annual: 2013-12-31
8-K 2019-04-16 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2019-01-16 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-10-16 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-08-17 Leave Agreement
8-K 2018-07-26 Other Events, Exhibits
8-K 2018-07-17 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-05-24 Other Events
8-K 2018-05-04 Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-04-17 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-01-17 Earnings, Regulation FD, Exhibits
8-K 2018-01-09 Other Events
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MCRB Seres Therapeutics 286
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HWC 2018-12-31
Part I
Part II
Item 8. “Financial Statements and Supplementary Data—Note 9” Provides Further Discussion on Long-Term Debt.
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
Note 1. Summary of Significant Accounting Policies and Recent Accounting Pronouncements
Note 2. Acquisitions and Divestiture
Note 3. Securities
Note 4. Loans and Allowance for Loan Losses
Note 5. Property and Equipment
Note 6. Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets
Note 7. Time Deposits
Note 8. Short-Term Borrowings
Note 9. Long-Term Debt
Note 10. Derivatives
Note 11. Stockholders’ Equity
Note 12. Noninterest Income and Noninterest Expense
Note 13. Income Taxes
Note 14. Earnings per Share
Note 15. Segment Reporting
Note 16. Retirement Benefit Plans
Note 17. Share-Based Payment Arrangements
Note 18. Commitments and Contingencies
Note 19. Fair Value of Financial Instruments
Note 20. Condensed Parent Company Information
Note 21. Subsequent Event
Part III
Part IV
Item 16. Form 10-K Summary
EX-21.1 hwc-20181231xex21_1.htm
EX-23.1 hwc-20181231xex23_1.htm
EX-31.1 hwc-20181231xex31_1.htm
EX-31.2 hwc-20181231xex31_2.htm
EX-32.1 hwc-20181231xex32_1.htm
EX-32.2 hwc-20181231xex32_2.htm

Hancock Whitney Earnings 2018-12-31

HWC 10K Annual Report

Balance SheetIncome StatementCash Flow

10-K 1 hwc-20181231x10k.htm 10-K 2018 Form 10K_Taxonomy2016








For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018





Commission file number 001-36872 

Hancock Whitney Corporation

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)







(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)


(I.R.S. Employer Identification Number)






Hancock Whitney Plaza, 2510 14th Street,
Gulfport, Mississippi




(228) 868-4727

(Address of principal executive offices)


(Zip Code)


Registrant’s telephone number, including area code

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:




(Title of Class)


(Name of Exchange on Which Registered)



The NASDAQ Stock Market, LLC

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      No   

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      No   

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      No   

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files).    Yes      No   

Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K 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.   

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, small reporting company or an emerging growth company.  See 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



Accelerated filer





Non-accelerated filer



Smaller reporting company








Emerging growth company  






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      No   

The aggregate market value of the voting stock held by nonaffiliates of the registrant as of February 22, 2019 was $4.0 billion based upon the closing market price on NASDAQ on June 30, 2018. For purposes of this calculation only, shares held by nonaffiliates are deemed to consist of (a) shares held by all shareholders other than directors and executive officers of the registrant plus (b) shares held by directors and officers as to which beneficial ownership has been disclaimed.

On January 31, 2019, the registrant had 85,686,848 shares of common stock outstanding. 



Portions of the definitive proxy statement for our annual meeting of shareholders to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC” or “the Commission”) are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Report.



Hancock Whitney Corporation

Form 10-K

































































ITEM 10.



ITEM 11.



ITEM 12.



ITEM 13.



ITEM 14.










ITEM 15.









Hancock Whitney Corporation

Glossary of Defined Terms


Hancock Whitney Corporation* – a financial holding company registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission    

Hancock Whitney Bank* – a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hancock Whitney Corporation through which Hancock Whitney Corporation conducts its banking operations

Company – Hancock Whitney Corporation and its wholly-owned subsidiaries

Parent – Hancock Whitney Corporation, exclusive of its subsidiaries

Bank – Hancock Whitney Bank

*On May 25, 2018, Hancock Whitney Corporation changed its name from Hancock Holding Company, and Hancock Whitney Bank changed its name from Whitney Bank.

ALCO  – Asset Liability Management Committee

AOCI – accumulated other comprehensive income or loss

ALLL – allowance for loan and lease losses

AMT – Alternative Minimum Tax

ASC – Accounting Standards Codification

ASU – Accounting Standards Update

ATM  automated teller machine

Basel II  Basel Committee's 2004 Regulatory Capital Framework (Second Accord)

Basel III  Basel Committee's 2010 Regulatory Capital Framework (Third Accord)

Basel Committee  Basel Committee on Banking Supervision

BSA – Bank Secrecy Act

bp(s) – basis point(s)

C&I – commercial and industrial loans

CD – certificate of deposit

CDE – Community Development Entity

CET1 – common equity tier 1 capital as defined by Basel III capital rules

CFPB – Consumer Finance Protection Bureau

COSO – Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission

CMO – Collateralized Mortgage Obligation

CRA – Community Reinvestment Act of 1977

CRE – commercial real estate

DIF – Deposit Insurance Fund

Dodd-Frank Act – The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

EITF – Emerging Issues Task Force

FASB – Financial Accounting Standards Board

FDIC – Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

FDICIA – Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991

Federal Reserve Bank – The 12 banks that are the operating arms of the U.S. central bank. They implement the

policies of the Federal Reserve Board and also conduct economic research.

Federal Reserve Board – The 7-member Board of Governors that oversees the Federal Reserve System, establishes

monetary policy (interest rates, credit, etc.), and monitors the economic health of the country. Its members are appointed

by the President subject to Senate confirmation, and serve 14-year terms.

Federal Reserve System – The 12 Federal Reserve Banks, with each one serving member banks in its own district.

This system, supervised by the Federal Reserve Board, has broad regulatory powers over the money supply and the

credit structure.

FFIEC – Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council

FHA – Federal Housing Administration




FHLB – Federal Home Loan Bank

FNBC or First NBC The former New Orleans, Louisiana-based First NBC Bank that failed on April 28, 2017

FNBC I – Transaction in which the Company acquired selected assets and liabilities from FNBC on March 10, 2017

FNBC II – Transaction in which the Company acquired selected assets and liabilities from the FDIC as receiver for FNBC under agreement dated April 28, 2017

FNBC Transactions – The FNBC I and FNBC II transactions, collectively

GAAP – Generally Accepted Accounting Principles in the United States of America

HFC – Harrison Finance Company, a former consumer finance subsidiary

LIBOR – London Interbank Offered Rate

LIHTC – Low Income Housing Tax Credit

LTIP – long-term incentive plan

MBS – mortgage-backed securities

MD&A – management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations

MDBCF – Mississippi Department of Banking and Consumer Finance

NAICS – North American Industry Classification System

n/m – not meaningful

OCI – other comprehensive income or loss

ORE – other real estate

PPNR – pre-provision net revenue (te)

SEC – U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

Securities Act – Securities Act of 1933, as amended

Tax Act – Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017

TDR – troubled debt restructuring (as defined in ASC 310-40)

te – taxable equivalent adjustment, or the term used to indicate that a financial measure is presented on a fully taxable equivalent basis

USA Patriot – Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001

U.S. Treasury – The United States Department of the Treasury

Volcker Rule – section 619 of the Dodd-Frank Act and regulations promulgated thereunder, as applicable








This report contains forward-looking statements within the meaning and protections of section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.  Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements we make in this annual report are set forth in this Annual Report on Form 10-K and in other reports or documents that we file from time to time with the SEC and include, but are not limited to, the following:



balance sheet and revenue growth expectations may differ from actual results;


the risk that our provision for loan losses may be inadequate or may be negatively affected by credit risk exposure;


loan growth expectations;


management’s predictions about charge-offs, including energy-related credits, the impact of changes in oil and gas prices on our energy portfolio, and the downstream impact on businesses that support that sector, especially in the Gulf Coast Region;


the risk that our enterprise risk management framework may not identify or address risks adequately, which may result in unexpected losses;


the impact of the trust and asset management transaction or future business combinations on our performance and financial condition including our ability to successfully integrate the business;


deposit trends;


credit quality trends;


changes in interest rates;


net interest margin trends;


future expense levels;


success of revenue-generating initiatives;


the effectiveness of derivative financial instruments and hedging activities to manage risks;


risks related to our reliance on third parties to provide key components of our business infrastructure, including the risks related to disruptions in services or financial difficulties of a third-party vendor;


risks related to the ability of our operational framework to manage risks associated with our business such as credit risk and operation risk, including third-party vendors and other service providers, which could among other things, result in a breach of operating or security systems as a result of a cyber-attack or similar act;


projected tax rates;


future profitability;


purchase accounting impacts, such as accretion levels;


our ability to identify and address potential cybersecurity risks, including data security breaches, credential stuffing, malware, “denial-of-service” attacks, “hacking” and identify theft, a failure of which could disrupt our business and result in the disclosure of and/or misuse or misappropriation of confidential or proprietary information, disruption or damage to our systems, increased costs, losses, or adverse effects to our reputation;


our ability to receive dividends from Hancock Whitney Bank could affect our liquidity, including our ability to pay dividends or take other capital actions;


the impact on our financial results, reputation, and business if we are unable to comply with all applicable federal and state regulations or other supervisory actions or directives and any necessary capital initiatives;


our ability to effectively compete with other traditional and non-traditional financial services companies, some of whom possess greater financial resources than we do or are subject to different regulatory standards than we are;


our ability to maintain adequate internal controls over financial reporting;


potential claims, damages, penalties, fines and reputational damage resulting from pending or future litigation, regulatory proceedings and enforcement actions;


the financial impact of future tax legislation;


changes in laws and regulations affecting our businesses, including legislation and regulations relating to bank products and services, as well as changes in the enforcement and interpretation of such laws and regulations by applicable governmental and self-regulatory agencies, which could require us to change certain business practices, increase compliance risk, reduce our revenue, impose additional costs on us, or otherwise negatively affect our businesses; and


other risks and risk factors described in Item 1A. “Risk Factors” herein and those identified from time to time in reports we file with the SEC.

Also, any statement that does not describe historical or current facts is a forward-looking statement. These statements often include the words “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “intends,” “plans,” “forecast,” “goals,” “targets,” “initiatives,” “focus,”




“potentially,” “probably,” “projects,” “outlook” or similar expressions or future conditional verbs such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” and “could.” Forward-looking statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of management and on information currently available to management. Our statements speak as of the date hereof, and we do not assume any obligation to update these statements or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those contained in such statements in light of new information or future events.  Factors that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in the Company’s forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, those risk factors outlined in Item 1A. “Risk Factors.” 


You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We do not intend, and undertake no obligation, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of differences in actual results, changes in assumptions or changes in other factors affecting such statements, except as required by law.



Hancock Whitney Corporation is a financial services company organized in 1984 as a bank holding company registered under the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, as amended.  In 2002, the Company qualified as a financial holding company, giving it broader powers to engage in financial activities. In 2011, the Company completed the acquisition of Whitney Holding Corporation and its subsidiary bank, Whitney National Bank.  The merger represented the combination of two well-established Gulf South banks, Hancock Bank, founded in 1899, and Whitney Bank, founded in 1883.  Following the merger, the Company’s subsidiary banks operated as “Hancock Bank” in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida and as “Whitney Bank” in Louisiana and Texas.  On May 25, 2018, the Company consolidated its two iconic brands and now operates the financial holding company and the bank as Hancock Whitney Corporation and Hancock Whitney Bank, respectively. The Company’s decision to consolidate the brands highlights its respect for the legacy of two grand old banks.

The Company, headquartered in Gulfport, Mississippi, provides a comprehensive network of full service financial choices through its bank subsidiary, Hancock Whitney Bank (the “Bank”), a Mississippi state bank and other nonbank affiliates.

At December 31, 2018, our balance sheet had grown to $28.2 billion, with loans totaling $20.0 billion and deposits totaling $23.2 billion, and we had 3,933 employees on a full time equivalent basis.    


The Bank offers a broad range of traditional and online banking services to commercial, small business and retail customers, providing a variety of transaction and savings deposit products, treasury management services, secured and unsecured loan products (including revolving credit facilities), and letters of credit and similar financial guarantees.  The Bank also provides trust and investment management services to retirement plans, corporations and individuals.

We offer other services through bank and nonbank subsidiaries. Our nonbank subsidiary Hancock Whitney Investment Services, Inc. provides discount investment brokerage services, annuity and life insurance products and participates in select underwriting transactions, primarily for banking clients with which we have an existing relationship. Our bank subsidiaries Hancock Whitney Equipment Finance, LLC and Hancock Whitney Equipment Finance and Leasing, LLC, provide commercial finance products to middle market and corporate clients, including loans, leases and related structures. We also have several special purpose subsidiaries to facilitate investments in new market tax credit activities and others that operate and sell certain foreclosed assets.

We operate primarily in the Gulf South region comprised of southern Mississippi; southern and central Alabama; southern Louisiana; the northern, central, and panhandle regions of Florida; and the Houston, Texas area. We also operate a loan production office in Nashville, Tennessee and separate trust and investment management offices in Texas, New York and New Jersey. 

Our operating strategy is to provide customers with the financial sophistication and range of products of a regional bank, while successfully retaining the commercial appeal and level of service of a community bank. Our size and scale enables us to attract and retain high quality employees, to whom we refer as associates, who are focused on executing this strategy.

Some of the most common forms of commerce along the Gulf Coast are energy and related services, petrochemical refining, military and government related activities, educational and medical complexes, transportation services and port facilities, tourism and gaming.

Our priority is to grow revenue in our existing markets with controlled expenses while providing five-star service through enhanced technology and processes that make banking simpler for our clients. We have and will continue to invest in promoting new and enhanced products that contribute to the goals of continuing to diversify our sources of revenue and increasing core deposit funding.  Our July 2018 acquisition of Capital One’s trust and asset management business expanded our existing trust operations, and provides




opportunity to develop relationships for other private, wholesale and retail services. We will continue to evaluate future acquisition opportunities that have the potential to increase shareholder value, provided overall economic conditions and our capital levels support such a transaction.

Additional information regarding the Company and the Bank is available at using the link titled Investor Relations.

Loan Production, Underwriting Standards and Credit Review

The Bank’s primary lending focus is to provide commercial, consumer and real estate loans to consumers, small and middle market businesses, and corporate clients in the markets served by the Bank. We seek to provide quality loan products that are attractive to the borrower and profitable to the Bank. We look to build strong, profitable client relationships over time and maintain a strong presence and position of influence in the communities we serve. Through our relationship-based approach, we have developed a deep knowledge of our customers and the markets in which they operate. We continually work to ensure consistency of the lending processes across our banking footprint, to strengthen the underwriting criteria we employ to evaluate new loans and loan renewals, and to diversify our loan portfolio in terms of type, industry and geographical concentration. We believe that these measures position the Bank to meet the credit needs of businesses and consumers in the markets we serve while pursuing a balanced strategy of loan profitability, growth and credit quality.

The following describes the underwriting procedures of the lending function and presents our principal categories of loans. The results of our lending activities and the relative risk of the loan portfolio are discussed in Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

The Bank has a set of loan policies, underwriting standards and key underwriting functions designed to achieve a consistent lending and credit review approach. Our underwriting standards address the following criteria:  


collateral requirements;


guarantor requirements (including policies on financial statements, tax returns, and guarantees);


requirements regarding appraisals and their review;


loan approval hierarchy;


standard consumer and small business credit scoring underwriting criteria (including credit score thresholds, maximum maturity and amortization, loan-to-value limits, global debt service coverage, and debt to income limits);


commercial real estate and commercial and industrial underwriting guidelines (including minimum debt service coverage ratio, maximum amortization, minimum equity requirements, maximum loan-to-value ratios);


lending limits; and


credit approval authorities.

Additionally, our loan concentration policy sets limits and manages our exposures within specified concentration tolerances, including those to particular borrowers, foreign entities, industries, and property types for commercial real estate. This policy sets standards for portfolio risk management and reporting, the monitoring of large borrower concentration limits and systematic tracking of large commercial loans and our portfolio mix. We continually monitor our concentration of commercial real estate, health care and energy-related loans to ensure the mix is consistent with our risk tolerance. We define concentration as the total of funded and unfunded commitments as a percentage of total Bank capital (as defined for risk-based capital ratios). Portfolio segment concentrations (shown as a percentage of risk-based capital) as of December 31, 2018 are as follows:    

Portfolio Segment Concentrations


Commercial non-real estate — 480%


Commercial real estate - owner occupied — 117%


Non-owner occupied commercial real estate — 115%


Residential mortgage — 140%


Consumer real estate secured — 84%


Consumer other — 66%




The following details the more significant industry concentrations for commercial non-real estate and owner occupied real estate included above (shown as a percentage of risk-based capital) as of December 31, 2018:

Significant Industry Concentrations


Mining, oil and gas — 61%  


Manufacturing — 55%  


Healthcare and social service — 53%


Real estate — 52%


Retail trade – 46%


Construction — 44%


Finance and insurance — 44%


Wholesale trade – 38%


Transportation and warehousing — 37%


Government and public administration – 30%


Professional, scientific and technology services — 27%


Education – 20%

Our underwriting process is structured to require oversight that is proportional to the size and complexity of the lending relationship. We delegate designated regional managers, relationship managers, and credit officers loan authority that can be utilized to approve credit commitments for a single borrowing relationship. The limit of delegated authority is based upon the experience, skill and training of the relationship manager or credit officer. Certain types and sizes of loans and relationships must be approved by either one of the Bank’s centralized underwriting units or by Regional or Senior Regional Commercial Credit Officers, either individually or jointly with either the Chief Credit Officer or Chief Credit Approval Officer, depending upon the overall size of the borrowing relationship.  

Loans are underwritten in accordance with the underwriting standards and loan policies of the Bank. Loans are underwritten primarily on the basis of the borrower’s ability to make timely debt service payments, and secondarily on collateral value. Generally, real estate secured loans and mortgage loans are made when the borrower produces evidence of the ability to make timely debt service payments along with appropriate equity investment in the property. Appropriate and regulatory compliant third party valuations are required at the time of origination for real estate secured loans.

The following briefly describes the composition of our loan portfolio by segment:

Commercial and industrial

The Bank offers a variety of commercial loan services to a diversified customer base over a range of industries, including energy, wholesale and retail trade in various durable and nondurable products, manufacturing of such products, marine transportation and maritime construction, financial and professional services, healthcare services, and agricultural production. Commercial and industrial loans are made available to businesses for working capital (including financing of inventory and receivables), business expansion, to facilitate the acquisition of a business, and the purchase of equipment and machinery, including equipment leasing.

Commercial non-real estate loans may be secured by the assets being financed or other tangible or intangible business assets such as accounts receivable, inventory, ownership, enterprise value, or commodity interests, and may incorporate a personal or corporate guarantee; however, some short-term loans may be made on an unsecured basis, including a small portfolio of corporate credit cards, generally issued as a part of overall customer relationships.  Asset-based loans, such as accounts receivables and commodity interest secured loans, may have limits on borrowing that are based on the collateral values.  In the case of loans secured by accounts receivable, the availability of funds for the repayment of these loans may be substantially dependent on the ability of the borrower to collect amounts due from its customers.


Commercial real estate – owner occupied loans consist of commercial mortgages on properties where repayment is generally dependent on the cash flow from the ongoing operations and activities of the borrower.  Like commercial non-real estate, these loans are primarily made based on the identified cash flows of the borrower, but also have the added strength of the value of underlying real estate collateral.  




Commercial real estate – income producing

Commercial real estate – income producing loans consist of loans secured by commercial mortgages on properties where the loan is made to real estate developers or investors and repayment is dependent on the sale, refinance or income generated from the operation of the property.  Properties financed include retail, office, multifamily, senior housing, hotel/motel, skilled nursing facilities and other commercial properties. 

Repayment of commercial real estate – income producing loans is generally dependent on the successful operation of the property securing the loan. Commercial real estate loans may be adversely affected by conditions in the real estate markets or in the general economy. The properties securing the commercial real estate – income producing portfolios are diverse in terms of type and geographic location. We monitor and evaluate these loans based on collateral, geography and risk grade criteria. This portfolio has experienced minimal losses in the last few years; however, past experience has shown that commercial real estate conditions can be volatile, so we actively monitor concentrations within this portfolio segment. 

Construction and land development

Construction and land development loans are made to facilitate the acquisition, development, improvement and construction of both commercial and residential-purpose properties.  Such loans are made to builders and investors where repayment is expected to be made from the sale, refinance or operation of the property or to businesses to be used in their business operations. 

Acquisition and development loans are underwritten utilizing feasibility studies, independent appraisal reviews, sensitivity analysis of real estate absorption and lease rates, and financial analysis of the developers and property owners. Construction loans are generally based upon cost estimates, the amount of sponsor equity investment, and the projected value of the completed project. The Bank monitors the construction process to mitigate or identify risks as they arise. Construction loans often involve the disbursement of substantial funds with repayment largely dependent on the success of the ultimate project. Sources of repayment for these types of construction loans may be pre-committed permanent loans from approved long-term lenders, sales of developed property, or an interim loan commitment from the Bank until permanent financing is obtained. These loans are typically closely monitored by on-site inspections and are considered to have higher risks than other real estate loans due to their ultimate repayment being sensitive to interest rate changes, governmental regulation of real property, general economic conditions, and the availability of long-term financing to repay the construction loan in full.

Owner occupied loans for the development and improvement of real property to commercial customers to be used in their business operations are underwritten subject to normal commercial and industrial credit standards and are generally subject to project tracking processes, similar to those required for the non-owner occupied loans.

This portfolio also includes residential construction loans and loans secured by raw land not yet under development.

Residential Mortgages

Residential mortgages consist of closed-end loans secured by first liens on 1- 4 family residential properties. The portfolio includes both fixed and adjustable rate loans, although most longer-term, fixed-rate loans originated are sold in the secondary mortgage market.  The sale of fixed-rate mortgage loans allows the Bank to manage the interest rate risks related to such lending operations.


Consumer loans include second lien mortgage home loans, home equity lines of credit and nonresidential consumer purpose loans. Nonresidential consumer loans include both direct and indirect loans.   Direct nonresidential consumer loans are made to finance the purchase of personal property, including automobiles, recreational vehicles and boats, and for other personal purposes (secured and unsecured), and deposit account secured loans. Indirect nonresidential loans include automobile financing provided to the consumer through an agreement with automobile dealerships.  Consumer loans also include a small portfolio of credit card receivables issued on the basis of applications received through referrals from the Bank’s branches, online and other marketing efforts.    

The Bank approves consumer loans based on income and financial information submitted by prospective borrowers as well as credit reports collected from various credit agencies. Financial stability and credit history of the borrower are the primary factors the Bank considers in granting such loans. The availability of collateral is also a factor considered in making such loans. Preference is also given to borrowers in the Bank’s primary market areas.

Securities Portfolio

The investment portfolio primarily consists of U.S. agency debt securities, U.S. agency mortgage-related securities and obligations of states and municipalities classified as either available for sale or held to maturity. We consider the available for sale portfolio as one of many sources of liquidity available to fund our operations. Investments are made in accordance with an investment policy approved by the Board Risk Committee.  Company policies generally limit investments to agency securities and municipal securities determined to be investment grade according to an internally generated score, which generally includes a rating of not less than “Baa” or its equivalent by a nationally recognized statistical rating organization.  The investment portfolio is tested monthly under multiple




stressed interest rate scenarios, the results of which are used to manage our interest rate risk position. The rate scenarios include regulatory and management agreed upon instantaneous and ramped rate movements that may be up to plus 500 basis points. The combined portfolio has a target effective duration of two to five and a half years. 

A significant portion of the securities portfolio is used to secure certain deposits and other liabilities requiring collateralization. However, to maintain an adequate level of liquidity, we limit the percentage of securities that can be pledged in order to keep a portion of securities available for sale. The securities portfolio can also be pledged to increase our line of credit available at the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Dallas, although we have not had to do so historically.  

The investments subcommittee of the asset/liability committee (ALCO) is responsible for the oversight, monitoring and management of the investment portfolio. The investments subcommittee is also responsible for the development of investment strategies for the consideration and approval of ALCO. Final authority and responsibility for all aspects of the conduct of investment activities rests with the Board Risk Committee, all in accordance with the overall guidance and limitations of the investment policy. See Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations-Enterprise Risk Management,” for further discussion.


The Bank has several programs designed to attract deposit accounts from consumers and businesses at interest rates generally consistent with market conditions. Deposits are the most significant funding source for the Company’s interest-earning assets. Interest paid on deposits represents the largest component of our interest expense. Deposits are attracted principally from clients within our retail branch network through the offering of a broad array of deposit products to individuals and businesses, including noninterest-bearing demand deposit accounts, interest-bearing transaction accounts, savings accounts, money market deposit accounts, and time deposit accounts. Terms vary among deposit products with respect to commitment periods, minimum balances and applicable fees. Interest rates offered on interest-bearing deposits are determined based on a number of factors, including, but not limited to, (1) interest rates offered in local markets by competitors, (2) current and expected economic conditions, (3) anticipated future interest rates, (4) the expected amount and timing of funding needs, and (5) the availability and cost of alternative funding sources. Deposit flows are controlled primarily through pricing, and to a lesser extent, through promotional activities. Management believes that the rates that it offers on deposit accounts are generally competitive with other financial institutions in the Bank’s respective market areas. Client deposits are attractive sources of funding because of their stability and low relative cost. Deposits are regarded as an important part of the overall client relationship.

The Bank also holds deposits of public entities. The Bank’s strategy for acquiring public funds, as with any type of deposit, is determined by ALCO’s funding and liquidity subcommittee while pricing decisions are determined by ALCO’s deposit pricing subcommittee. Typically, many public fund deposits are allocated based upon the rate of interest offered and the ability of a bank to provide collateralization. The Bank can influence the level of its public fund deposits through pricing decisions. Public deposits typically require the pledging of collateral, most commonly marketable securities and Federal Home Loan Bank letters of credit. This is taken into account when determining the level of interest to be paid on public deposits. The pledging of collateral, monitoring and management reporting represents additional operational requirements for the Bank. Public fund deposits are more volatile than other core deposits because they tend to be price sensitive and have high balances. Public funds are only one of many possible sources of liquidity that the Bank has available to draw upon as part of its liquidity funding strategy as set by ALCO.

Brokered deposits of $1.23 billion at December 31, 2018 represent about 5% of total deposits. Brokered deposits are funds which the Bank obtains through deposit brokers who sell participations in a given bank deposit account or instrument to one or more investors. These brokered deposits are fully insured by the FDIC because they are participated out by the deposit broker in shares of $250,000 or less. These brokered deposit issuances were approved by ALCO as one component of its funding strategy to support ongoing asset growth until such time as customer deposit growth ultimately replaces the brokered deposits. Under the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991 (“FDICIA”), the Bank may continue to accept brokered deposits as long as it is either “well-capitalized” or “adequately-capitalized.”

Trust Services

The Bank, through its trust department, offers a full range of trust services on a fee basis. In its trust capacities, the Bank provides investment management services on an agency basis and acts as trustee for pension plans, profit sharing plans, corporate and municipal bond issues, living trusts, life insurance trusts and various other types of trusts created by or for individuals, businesses, and charitable and religious organizations. During 2018, the acquisition of a bank-managed high net worth individual and institutional investment management and trust business expanded the Bank’s existing trust operations.  As of December 31, 2018, the trust department of the Bank had approximately $23.6 billion of assets under administration compared to $15.5 billion as of December 31, 2017.  As of December 31, 2018, administered assets include investment management and investment advisory agency accounts totaling $5.3 billion, corporate trust accounts totaling $4.0 billion, and the remaining balances were personal, employee benefit, estate and other trust accounts.





The financial services industry is highly competitive in our market areas. The principal factors in the competition for deposits and loans are interest rates and fee structures associated with the various products offered. We also compete through the efficiency, quality and range of services and products we provide, as well as the convenience provided by an extensive network of customer access channels including local branch offices, ATMs, online and mobile banking, and telebanking centers. In attracting deposits and in our lending activities, we generally compete with other commercial banks, savings associations, credit unions, mortgage banking firms, consumer finance companies, securities brokerage firms, mutual funds and insurance companies, and other financial and non-financial institutions offering similar products.  


We make available free of charge, on or through our investor relations website, our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K, and other filings pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and amendments to such filings, as soon as reasonably practicable after each is electronically filed with, or furnished to, the SEC. The SEC maintains a website that contains the Company’s reports, proxy statements, and the Company’s other SEC filings. The address of the SEC’s website is We include our website address throughout this filing only as textual references. The information contained on our website is not incorporated in this document by reference.

Also available on our investor relations website are our corporate governance documents, including Corporate Governance Guidelines, Code of Business Ethics for Officers and Associates, Whistleblower Policy, Code of Ethics for Financial Officers, Code of Ethics for Directors and Committee Charting.  These documents are also available in print to any stockholder who requests a copy.


Bank holding companies and banks are extensively regulated under federal and state law.  This discussion is a summary and is qualified in its entirety by reference to the particular statutory and regulatory provisions described below and is not intended to be an exhaustive description of the statutes or regulations applicable to the Company or the Bank.

Changes in laws and regulations may alter the structure, regulation and competitive relationships of financial institutions. In addition, bank regulatory agencies may issue enforcement actions, policy statements, interpretive letters and similar written guidance applicable to us or the Bank.  It cannot be predicted whether and in what form new laws and regulations, or interpretations thereof, may be adopted or the extent to which the business of the Company and the Bank may be affected thereby, but they may have a material adverse effect on our business, operations, and earnings. 

Supervision, regulation, and examination of the Company, the Bank, and our respective subsidiaries by the appropriate regulatory agencies, as described herein, are intended primarily for the protection of consumers, bank depositors and the Deposit Insurance Fund (“DIF”) of the FDIC, and the U.S. banking and financial system, rather than holders of our capital stock. 

Bank Holding Company Regulation

The Company is subject to extensive supervision and regulation by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (the “Federal Reserve”) pursuant to the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, as amended (the “Bank Holding Company Act”). We are required to file with the Federal Reserve periodic reports and such other information as the Federal Reserve may request.  Ongoing supervision is provided through regular examinations by the Federal Reserve and other means that allow the regulators to gauge management’s ability to identify, assess and control risk in all areas of operations in a safe and sound manner and to ensure compliance with laws and regulations. In addition to regulation by the Federal Reserve as a bank holding company, the Company is subject to regulation by the State of Mississippi under its general business corporation laws, and to supervision by the Mississippi Department of Consumer Finance (the “MDBCF”).  The Federal Reserve may also examine our non-bank subsidiaries.  Various federal and state bodies regulate and supervise our brokerage, investment advisory, insurance agency and processing operations. These include, but are not limited to, the SEC, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, federal and state banking regulators and various state regulators of insurance and brokerage activities.    

Violations of laws and regulations, or other unsafe and unsound practices, may result in regulatory agencies imposing fines or penalties, cease and desist orders, or taking other enforcement actions. Under certain circumstances, these agencies may enforce these remedies directly against officers, directors, employees and other parties participating in the affairs of a bank or bank holding company. Under federal and state laws and regulations pertaining to the safety and soundness of insured depository institutions, federal and state banking regulators have the authority to compel or restrict certain actions on our part if they determine that we have insufficient capital or other resources, or are otherwise operating in a manner that may be deemed to be inconsistent with safe and




sound banking practices. Under this authority, our bank regulators can require us or our subsidiaries to enter into informal or formal supervisory agreements, including board resolutions, memoranda of understanding, written agreements and consent or cease and desist orders, pursuant to which we would be required to take identified corrective actions to address cited concerns and to refrain from taking certain actions.

If we become subject to and are unable to comply with the terms of any future regulatory actions or directives, supervisory agreements, or orders, then we could become subject to additional, heightened supervisory actions and orders, possibly including consent orders, prompt corrective action restrictions and/or other regulatory actions, including prohibitions on the payment of dividends on our common stock and preferred stock. If our regulators were to take such additional supervisory actions, then we could, among other things, become subject to significant restrictions on our ability to develop any new business, as well as restrictions on our existing business, and we could be required to raise additional capital, dispose of certain assets and liabilities within a prescribed period of time, or both. The terms of any such supervisory action could have a material negative effect on our business, reputation, operating flexibility, financial condition, and the value of our common stock and preferred stock.

Activity Limitations.  The Company is registered with the Federal Reserve as a bank holding company and has elected to be treated as a financial holding company under the Bank Holding Company Act. Bank holding companies generally are limited to the business of banking, managing or controlling banks, and other activities that the Federal Reserve determines to be closely related to banking, or managing or controlling banks as to be a proper incident thereto. Bank holding companies are prohibited from acquiring or obtaining control of more than five percent (5%) of the outstanding voting interests of any company that engages in activities other than those activities permissible for bank holding companies. Examples of activities that the Federal Reserve has determined to be permissible are making, acquiring, brokering, or servicing loans; leasing personal property; providing certain investment or financial advice; performing certain data processing services; acting as agent or broker in selling credit life insurance and other insurance products in certain locations; and performing certain insurance underwriting activities. The Bank Holding Company Act does not place geographic limits on permissible non-banking activities of bank holding companies. Even with respect to permissible activities, however, the Federal Reserve has the power to order a holding company or its subsidiaries to terminate any activity or its control of any subsidiary when the Federal Reserve has reasonable cause to believe that continuation of such activity or control of such subsidiary would pose a serious risk to the financial safety, soundness or stability of any bank subsidiary of that holding company.

As a financial holding company, we are permitted to engage directly or indirectly in a broader range of activities than those permitted for a bank holding company. Financial holding companies may also engage in activities that are considered to be financial in nature, as well as those incidental or complementary to financial activities.  We and the Bank must each remain “well-capitalized” and “well-managed” and the Bank must receive a Community Reinvestment Act (“CRA”) rating of at least “Satisfactory” at its most recent examination in order for us to maintain our status as a financial holding company. If the Company or the Bank ceases to be “well capitalized” or “well managed” under applicable regulatory standards, or if the Bank receives a rating of less than satisfactory under the CRA, the Federal Reserve Board may, among other things, place limitations on our ability to conduct these broader financial activities or, if the deficiencies persist, require us to divest the banking subsidiary or the businesses engaged in activities permissible only for financial holding companies.

In addition, the Federal Reserve has the power to order a bank holding company or its subsidiaries to terminate any nonbanking activity or terminate its ownership or control of any nonbank subsidiary, when it has reasonable cause to believe that continuation of such activity or such ownership or control constitutes a serious risk to the financial safety, soundness, or stability of any bank subsidiary of that bank holding company.  As further described below, each of the Company and the Bank is well-capitalized as of December 31, 2018, and the Bank has a rating of “Satisfactory” in its most recent CRA evaluation.

Source of Strength Obligations.  A bank holding company is required to act as a source of financial and managerial strength to its subsidiary bank and to maintain resources adequate to support its bank. The term “source of financial strength” means the ability of a company, such as us, that directly or indirectly owns or controls an insured depository institution, such as the Bank, to provide financial assistance to such insured depository institution in the event of financial distress.  The appropriate federal banking agency for the depository institution (in the case of the Bank, this agency is the FDIC) may require reports from us to assess our ability to serve as a source of strength and to enforce compliance with the source of strength requirements by requiring us to provide financial assistance to the Bank in the event of financial distress.  If we were to enter bankruptcy or become subject to the orderly liquidation process established by the Dodd-Frank Act, any commitment by us to a federal bank regulatory agency to maintain the capital of the Bank would be assumed by the bankruptcy trustee or the FDIC, as appropriate, and entitled to a priority of payment. In addition, the FDIC provides that any insured depository institution generally will be liable for any loss incurred by the FDIC in connection with the default of, or any assistance provided by the FDIC to, a commonly controlled insured depository institution. The Bank is an FDIC-insured depository institution and thus subject to these requirements.

Acquisitions. The Bank Holding Company Act requires every bank holding company to obtain the prior approval of the Federal Reserve or waiver of such prior approval before it (1) acquires ownership or control of any voting shares of any bank if, after such acquisition, such bank holding company will own or control more than five percent (5%) of the voting shares of such bank, (2) acquires all of the assets of a bank, or (3) merges with any other bank holding company. In reviewing a proposed covered




acquisition, among other factors, the Federal Reserve considers (1) the financial and managerial resources of the companies involved, including pro forma capital ratios; (2) the risk to the stability of the United States banking or financial system; (3) the convenience and needs of the communities to be served, including performance under the CRA; and (4) the effectiveness of the companies in combatting money laundering. The Federal Reserve also reviews any indebtedness to be incurred by a bank holding company in connection with a proposed acquisition to ensure that the bank holding company can service such indebtedness without adversely affecting its ability to serve as a source of strength to its bank subsidiaries.  Well capitalized and well managed bank holding companies are permitted to acquire control of banks in any state, subject to federal regulatory approval, without regard to whether such a transaction is prohibited by the laws of any state. However, a bank holding company may not, following an interstate acquisition, control more than 10% of nationwide insured deposits or 30% of deposits within any state in which the acquiring bank operates. States have the right to lower the 30% limit, although no states within the Company’s current market area have done so.  Federal banking regulators are also required to take into account compliance with the CRA in evaluating any proposal for interstate bank acquisitions.

Change in Control.  Federal law restricts the amount of voting stock of a bank holding company or a bank that a person may acquire without the prior approval of banking regulators. Under the federal Change in Bank Control Act and the regulations thereunder, a person or group must give advance notice to and obtain approval from the Federal Reserve before acquiring control of any bank holding company, such as the Company. The Change in Bank Control Act creates a rebuttable presumption of control if a member or group acquires a certain percentage or more of a bank holding company’s voting stock, or if one or more other control factors are present. As a result, a person or entity generally must provide prior notice to the Federal Reserve before acquiring the power to vote 10% or more of our outstanding common stock.  The overall effect of such laws is to make it more difficult to acquire a bank holding company by tender offer or similar means than it might be to acquire control of another type of corporation. Consequently, shareholders of the Company may be less likely to benefit from the rapid increases in stock prices that may result from tender offers or similar efforts to acquire control of other companies. Investors should be aware of these requirements when acquiring shares of our stock. 

Anti-tying rules.  A bank holding company and its subsidiaries are prohibited from engaging in certain tying arrangements in connection with extensions of credit, leases or sales of property, or furnishing of services.

Volcker Rule. The Volcker Rule generally prohibits us and our subsidiaries from (i) engaging in proprietary trading for our own account, and (ii) acquiring or retaining an ownership interest in or sponsoring a “covered fund,” all subject to certain exceptions. The Volcker Rule also specifies certain limited activities in which we and our subsidiaries may continue to engage, and required us to implement a compliance program. On June 5, 2018, the federal banking agencies issued proposed changes to the Volcker Rule, along with a request for public comment.  The proposed changes are intended to simplify compliance with the Rule’s “proprietary trading” restrictions.    

Capital Requirements

We are required under federal law to maintain certain minimum capital levels based on ratios of capital to total assets and capital to risk-weighted assets. The required capital ratios are minimums, and the federal banking agencies may determine that a banking organization, based on its size, complexity or risk profile, must maintain a higher level of capital in order to operate in a safe and sound manner. Risks such as concentration of credit risks and the risk arising from non-traditional activities, as well as the institution’s exposure to a decline in the economic value of its capital due to changes in interest rates, and an institution’s ability to manage those risks are important factors that are to be taken into account by the federal banking agencies in assessing an institution’s overall capital adequacy. The following is a brief description of the relevant provisions of these capital rules and their potential impact on our capital levels.

The Company and the Bank are subject to the following risk-based capital ratios: a common equity Tier 1 ("CET1") risk-based capital ratio, a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio, which includes CET1 and additional Tier 1 capital, and a total capital ratio, which includes Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital.  CET1 is primarily comprised of the sum of common stock instruments and related surplus net of treasury stock, retained earnings, and certain qualifying minority interests, less certain adjustments and deductions, including with respect to goodwill, intangible assets, mortgage servicing assets and deferred tax assets subject to temporary timing differences. Additional Tier 1 capital is primarily comprised of noncumulative perpetual preferred stock, tier 1 minority interests and grandfathered trust preferred securities. Tier 2 capital consists of instruments disqualified from Tier 1 capital, including qualifying subordinated debt, other preferred stock and certain hybrid capital instruments, and a limited amount of loan loss reserves up to a maximum of 1.25% of risk-weighted assets, subject to certain eligibility criteria. The capital rules also define the risk-weights assigned to assets and off-balance sheet items to determine the risk-weighted asset components of the risk-based capital rules, including, for example, certain “high volatility” commercial real estate, past due assets, structured securities and equity holdings.




The leverage capital ratio, which serves as a minimum capital standard, is the ratio of Tier 1 capital to quarterly average assets net of goodwill, certain other intangible assets, and certain required deduction items. The required minimum leverage ratio for all banks and bank holding companies is 4%.

In addition, the capital rules require a capital conservation buffer of up to 2.5% above each of the minimum capital ratio requirements (CET1, Tier 1, and total risk-based capital), which is designed to absorb losses during periods of economic stress.  These buffer requirements must be met for a bank or bank holding company to be able to pay dividends, engage in share buybacks or make discretionary bonus payments to executive management without restriction. This capital conservation buffer is being phased in, and was 1.875% as of January 1, 2018 and is 2.5% effective January 1, 2019. 

Failure to be well-capitalized or to meet minimum capital requirements could result in certain mandatory and possible additional discretionary actions by regulators that, if undertaken, could have an adverse material effect on our operations or financial condition. For example, only a well-capitalized depository institution may accept brokered deposits without prior regulatory approval. Failure to be well-capitalized or to meet minimum capital requirements could also result in restrictions on the Company’s or the Bank’s ability to pay dividends or otherwise distribute capital or to receive regulatory approval of applications or other restrictions on its growth.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act of 1991 (“FDICIA”), among other things, requires the federal bank regulatory agencies to take “prompt corrective action” regarding depository institutions that do not meet minimum capital requirements. FDICIA establishes five regulatory capital tiers: “well capitalized”, “adequately capitalized”, “undercapitalized”, “significantly undercapitalized”, and “critically undercapitalized”. A depository institution’s capital tier will depend upon how its capital levels compare to various relevant capital measures and certain other factors, as established by regulation. FDICIA generally prohibits a depository institution from making any capital distribution (including payment of a dividend) or paying any management fee to its holding company if the depository institution would thereafter be undercapitalized. The FDICIA imposes progressively more restrictive restraints on operations, management and capital distributions, depending on the category in which an institution is classified.  Undercapitalized depository institutions are subject to restrictions on borrowing from the Federal Reserve System. In addition, undercapitalized depository institutions may not accept brokered deposits absent a waiver from the FDIC, are subject to growth limitations and are required to submit capital restoration plans for regulatory approval. A depository institution's holding company must guarantee any required capital restoration plan, up to an amount equal to the lesser of 5 percent of the depository institution's assets at the time it becomes undercapitalized or the amount of the capital deficiency when the institution fails to comply with the plan.  Federal banking agencies may not accept a capital plan without determining, among other things, that the plan is based on realistic assumptions and is likely to succeed in restoring the depository institution's capital. If a depository institution fails to submit an acceptable plan, it is treated as if it is significantly undercapitalized. All of the federal bank regulatory agencies have adopted regulations establishing relevant capital measures and relevant capital levels for federally insured depository institutions. The Bank was well capitalized at December 31, 2018, and brokered deposits are not restricted.

To be well-capitalized, the Bank must maintain at least the following capital ratios:


6.5% CET1 to risk-weighted assets;


8.0% Tier 1 capital to risk-weighted assets;


10.0% Total capital to risk-weighted assets; and


5.0% leverage ratio.

The Federal Reserve has not yet revised the well-capitalized standard for bank holding companies to reflect the higher capital requirements imposed under the current capital rules. For purposes of the Federal Reserve’s Regulation Y, including determining whether a bank holding company meets the requirements to be a financial holding company, bank holding companies, such as the Company, must maintain a Tier 1 risk-based capital ratio of 6.0% or greater and a total risk-based capital ratio of 10.0% or greater to be well-capitalized. If the Federal Reserve were to apply the same or a very similar well-capitalized standard to bank holding companies as that applicable to the Bank, the Company’s capital ratios as of December 31, 2018 would exceed such revised well-capitalized standard. Also, the Federal Reserve may require bank holding companies, including the Company, to maintain capital ratios substantially in excess of mandated minimum levels, depending upon general economic conditions and a bank holding company’s particular condition, risk profile and growth plans. 

The Company’s and the Bank’s regulatory capital ratios were above the applicable well-capitalized standards and met the then-applicable capital conservation buffer.   Based on current estimates, we believe that the Company and the Bank will continue to exceed all applicable well-capitalized regulatory capital requirements and the capital conservation buffer.  Risk-based capital ratios and the leverage capital ratio and at December 31, 2018, under currently applicable capital adequacy rules for the Company and the Bank were as follows:     
































































Minimum Capital Plus










Under Prompt


Capital Conservation Buffer


Company at


Bank at






Corrective Action*










Tier 1 leverage capital ratio















Risk-based capital ratios



















Common Equity Tier 1 capital













Tier 1 capital













Total risk-based capital
  (Tier 1 plus Tier 2)













*Applies to Bank

In June 2016, the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued Accounting Standards Update No. 2016-13, commonly referred to as CECL, to replace the current “incurred loss” methodology for financial assets measured at amortized cost, and change the approach for recognizing and recording credit losses on available-for-sale debt securities and purchased credit impaired financial assets. Under the incurred loss methodology, credit losses are recognized only when the losses are probable or have been incurred; under CECL, companies are required to recognize the full amount of expected credit losses for the lifetime of the financial assets, based on historical experience, current conditions and reasonable and supportable forecasts. This change will result in earlier recognition of credit losses that the Company deems expected but not yet probable. For SEC reporting companies with December 31 fiscal-year ends, such as the Company, CECL will become effective beginning with the first quarter of 2020. On December 21, 2018, the federal banking agencies issued a joint final rule to revise their regulatory capital rules to (i) address the upcoming implementation of CECL under GAAP; (ii) provide an optional three-year phase-in period for the day-one adverse regulatory capital effects that banking organizations are expected to experience upon adopting CECL; and (iii) require the use of CECL in stress tests beginning with the 2020 capital planning and stress testing cycle for certain banking organizations.

Payment of Dividends

Hancock Whitney Corporation is a legal entity separate and distinct from Hancock Whitney Bank and other subsidiaries.  Its primary source of cash, other than securities offerings, is dividends from the Bank. Under the Federal Deposit Insurance Act, no dividends may be paid by an insured bank if the bank is in arrears in the payment of any insurance assessment due to the FDIC.  The payment of dividends by the Bank may also be affected by other regulatory requirements and policies, such as the maintenance of adequate capital. If, in the opinion of the applicable regulatory authority, a bank under its jurisdiction is engaged in, or is about to engage in, an unsafe or unsound practice (which, depending on the financial condition of the bank, could include the payment of dividends), such authority may require, after notice and hearing, that such bank cease and desist from such practice. The FDIC has formal and informal policies which provide that insured banks should generally pay dividends only out of current operating earnings.

Under a Federal Reserve policy adopted in 2009, the board of directors of a bank holding company must consider certain factors to ensure that its dividend level is prudent relative to maintaining a strong financial position, and is not based on overly optimistic earnings scenarios, such as potential events that could affect its ability to pay, while still maintaining a strong financial position. As a general matter, the Federal Reserve has indicated that the board of directors of a bank holding company should consult with the Federal Reserve and eliminate, defer or significantly reduce the bank holding company’s dividends if:


its net income available to shareholders for the past four quarters, net of dividends previously paid during that period, is not sufficient to fully fund the dividends;


its prospective rate of earnings retention is not consistent with its capital needs and overall current and prospective financial condition; or


it will not meet, or is in danger of not meeting, its minimum regulatory capital adequacy ratios.

Stress Testing

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (the “Dodd-Frank Act”) introduced enhanced regulatory oversight by requiring annual, company-run stress tests of bank holding companies and banks, such as the Company and the Bank, that have more than $10 billion but less than $50 billion of consolidated assets.  These stress tests analyzed the potential impact of baseline, adverse, and severely adverse economic scenarios specified by the Federal Reserve for the Company and by the FDIC for the Bank.  The impact of these scenarios were measured against the consolidated earnings, balance sheet and capital of a bank holding company or depository institution over a designated planning horizon of nine quarters, taking into account the organization’s current condition, risks, exposures, strategies, and activities, and such factors as the regulators may request of a specific organization. 





The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (the “Economic Growth Act”) signed into law in May 2018 scaled back certain requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act and provided other regulatory relief. Among the provisions of the Economic Growth Act that benefit the Company and Bank are that banking organizations having less than $100 billion in consolidated assets, such as the Company and the Bank, do not have to perform the company-run stress testing previously required by the Dodd-Frank Act. However, we continue to perform stress testing exercises as part of a prudent risk management process. 

Bank Regulation

The operation of the Bank is subject to state and federal statutes applicable to state banks and the regulations of the Federal Reserve, the FDIC and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”). The operations of the Bank may also be subject to applicable Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) regulation to the extent state banks are granted parity with national banks. Such statutes and regulations relate to, among other things, required reserves, investments, loans, mergers and consolidations, issuances of securities, payments of dividends, establishment of branches, consumer protection and other aspects of the Bank’s operations. Violations of laws and regulations, or other unsafe and unsound practices, may result in these agencies imposing fines or penalties, cease and desist orders, or taking other enforcement actions.  Under certain circumstances, these agencies may enforce these remedies directly against officers, directors, employees and other parties participating in the affairs of a bank or bank holding company.

Safety and Soundness.  The Federal Deposit Insurance Act requires the federal prudential bank regulatory agencies, such as the FDIC, to prescribe, by regulation or guideline, operational and managerial standards for all insured depository institutions relating to: (1) internal controls; (2) information systems and audit systems; (3) loan documentation; (4) credit underwriting; (5) interest rate risk exposure; and (6) asset quality. The agencies also must prescribe standards for asset quality, earnings, and stock valuation, as well as standards for compensation, fees and benefits. The federal banking agencies have adopted regulations and Interagency Guidelines Establishing Standards for Safety and Soundness to implement these required standards. These guidelines set forth the safety and soundness standards used to identify and address problems at insured depository institutions before capital becomes impaired. Under the regulations, if a regulator determines that a bank fails to meet any standards prescribed by the guidelines, the regulator may require the bank to submit an acceptable plan to achieve compliance, consistent with deadlines for the submission and review of such safety and soundness compliance plans.

Examinations. The Bank is subject to regulation, reporting, and periodic examinations by the FDIC, the Mississippi Department of Banking and Consumer Finance (the “MDBCF”), and the CFPB. These regulatory authorities routinely examine the Bank’s reserves, loan and investment quality, consumer compliance, management policies, procedures and practices and other aspects of operations. The FDIC has adopted the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council’s (“FFIEC”) rating system and assigns each financial institution a confidential composite rating based on an evaluation and rating of six essential components of an institution’s financial condition and operations, including Capital Adequacy, Asset Quality, Management, Earnings, Liquidity and Sensitivity to Market Risk, as well as the quality of risk management practices. 

Consumer Protection. The Dodd-Frank Act established the CFPB,  an independent regulatory authority housed within the Federal Reserve having centralized authority, including examination and enforcement authority, for consumer protection in the banking industry.  The CFPB has rule writing, examination, and enforcement authority with regard to the Bank’s (and the Company’s) compliance with a wide array of consumer financial protection laws, including the Truth in Lending Act, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the Truth in Savings Act, the Electronic Funds Transfer Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, the S.A.F.E. Mortgage Licensing Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (except Sections 615(e) and 628), the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (sections 502 through 509 relating to privacy), among others. The CFPB has broad authority to enforce a prohibition on unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts and practice.  The Bank is subject to direct supervision and examination by the CFPB. The CFPB also may examine our other direct or indirect subsidiaries that offer consumer financial products or services. In addition, the Dodd-Frank Act permits states to adopt consumer protection laws and regulations that are stricter than those regulations promulgated by the CFPB, and state attorneys general are permitted to enforce consumer protection rules adopted by the CFPB against certain institutions.

Branching. The Dodd-Frank Act authorizes national and state banks to establish de novo branches in other states to the same extent a bank chartered in those states would be so permitted.

Deposit Insurance Assessments. The Deposit Insurance Fund (“DIF”) of the FDIC insures the deposits of the Bank generally up to a maximum of $250,000 per depositor, per insured bank, for each account ownership category.  The FDIC charges insured depository institutions quarterly premiums to maintain the DIF.  Deposit insurance assessments are based on average total consolidated assets minus its average tangible equity.  For larger institutions, such as the Bank, the FDIC uses a performance score and a loss-severity score to calculate an initial assessment.   In calculating these scores, the FDIC uses a bank’s capital level and supervisory ratings (its “CAMELS ratings”) and certain financial measures to assess the institution’s ability to withstand asset-related stress and funding-related stress.  The FDIC has the ability to make discretionary adjustments to the total score based upon significant risk factors that are not adequately captured in the calculations.




In March 2016, the FDIC adopted a final rule to increase the reserve ratio for the DIF to 1.35% of total insured deposits.  The rule imposed a surcharge of 4.5 basis points on the excess of the depository institution’s assessment base over $10 billion until the earlier of the quarter that the reserve ratio first reaches or exceeds 1.35% or December 31, 2018.  The DIF ratio rose to 1.36% and the third quarter of 2018 was the last period in which large banks were assessed the quarterly surcharge under this restoration plan. In addition, in 2018 the Bank was subject to quarterly assessments by the FDIC to pay interest on Financing Corporation ("FICO") bonds.

Insurance of deposits may be terminated by the FDIC upon a finding that an institution has engaged in unsafe or unsound practices, is in an unsafe or unsound condition to continue operations or has violated any applicable law, regulation, rule, order or condition imposed by the FDIC.  The Bank does not believe that it is taking or is subject to any action, condition or violation that could lead to termination of its deposit insurance.  In addition, the Federal Deposit Insurance Act provides that, in the event of the liquidation or other resolution of an insured depository institution, the claims of depositors of the institution, including the claims of the FDIC as subrogee of insured depositors, and certain claims for administrative expenses of the FDIC as a receiver, will have priority over other general unsecured claims against the institution, including those of the parent bank holding company.

Insider Transactions. In addition to regulating capital, the FDIC has broad authority to prevent the development or continuance of unsafe or unsound banking practices. Pursuant to this authority, the FDIC has adopted regulations that restrict preferential loans and loan amounts to “affiliates” and “insiders” of banks, require banks to keep information on loans to major shareholders and executive officers and bar certain director and officer interlocks between financial institutions.

Mergers, Subsidiaries. The FDIC is also authorized to approve mergers, consolidations and assumption of deposit liability transactions between insured banks and between insured banks and uninsured banks or institutions to prevent capital or surplus diminution in such transactions where the resulting, continuing or assumed bank is an insured nonmember state bank.

Reserves. Although the Bank is not a member of the Federal Reserve, it is subject to Federal Reserve regulations that require the Bank to maintain reserves against transaction accounts (primarily checking accounts). These reserve requirements are subject to annual adjustment by the Federal Reserve.

Anti-Money Laundering.  Under the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (“USA PATRIOT”) Act of 2001, financial institutions are subject to prohibitions against specified financial transactions and account relationships as well as enhanced due diligence and “know your customer” standards in their dealings with foreign financial institutions and foreign customers. The USA PATRIOT Act requires financial institutions to establish anti-money laundering programs with minimum standards that include:


a system of internal policies, procedures, and controls to ensure ongoing compliance;


the designation of an individual responsible for coordinating and monitoring compliance;


an ongoing employee training program;


an independent audit function to test the programs; and


appropriate risk-based procedures for conducting ongoing customer due diligence.

Bank regulators routinely examine institutions for compliance with these anti-money laundering obligations and recently have been active in imposing “cease and desist” and other regulatory orders and money penalty sanctions against institutions found to be in violation of these requirements.  In addition, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has adopted new regulations that became effective on May 11, 2018, that require, subject to certain exclusions and exemptions, covered financial institutions to identify and verify the identity of beneficial owners of legal entity customers.

Economic Sanctions. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) is responsible for helping to ensure that U.S. entities do not engage in transactions with certain prohibited parties, as defined by various Executive Orders and acts of Congress.  OFAC publishes, and routinely updates, lists of names of persons and organizations suspected of aiding, harboring or engaging in terrorist acts, including the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List.  If we find a name on any transaction, account or wire transfer that is on an OFAC list, we must undertake certain specified activities, which could include blocking or freezing the account or transaction requested, and we must notify the appropriate authorities.




Concentrations in Lending.  During 2006, the federal bank regulatory agencies released guidance on “Concentrations in Commercial Real Estate Lending” (the “Guidance”) and advised financial institutions of the risks posed by CRE lending concentrations. The Guidance requires that appropriate processes be in place to identify, monitor and control risks associated with real estate lending concentrations. Higher allowances for loan losses and capital levels may also be required. The Guidance is triggered when CRE loan concentrations exceed either:


Total reported loans for construction, land development, and other land of 100% or more of a bank’s total risk based capital; or


Total reported loans secured by multifamily and nonfarm nonresidential properties and loans for construction, land development, and other land of 300% or more of a bank’s total risk based capital.

The Guidance also applies when a bank has a sharp increase in CRE loans or has significant concentrations of CRE secured by a particular property type.

Community Reinvestment Act.  The Bank is subject to the provisions of the CRA, which imposes a continuing and affirmative obligation, consistent with their safe and sound operation, to help meet the credit needs of entire communities where the bank accepts deposits, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. The FDIC’s assessment of the Bank’s CRA record is made available to the public. Further, a less than satisfactory CRA rating will slow, if not preclude, expansion of banking activities and prevent a company from becoming or remaining a financial holding company. Federal CRA regulations require, among other things, that evidence of discrimination against applicants on a prohibited basis, and illegal or abusive lending practices be considered in the CRA evaluation. The Bank has a rating of “Satisfactory” in its most recent CRA evaluation.

Consumer Regulation. Activities of the Bank are subject to a variety of statutes and regulations designed to protect consumers. These laws and regulations include, among numerous other things, provisions that:


limit the interest and other charges collected or contracted for by the Bank, including rules respecting the terms of credit cards and of debit card overdrafts;


govern the Bank’s disclosures of credit terms to consumer borrowers;


require the Bank to provide information to enable the public and public officials to determine whether it is fulfilling its obligation to help meet the housing needs of the community it serves;


prohibit the Bank from discriminating on the basis of race, creed or other prohibited factors when it makes decisions to extend credit;


govern the manner in which the Bank may collect consumer debts; and


prohibit unfair, deceptive or abusive acts or practices in the provision of consumer financial products and services.

Mortgage Rules. Pursuant to rules adopted by the CFPB, banks that make residential mortgage loans are required to make a good faith determination that a borrower has the ability to repay a mortgage loan prior to extending such credit, require that certain mortgage loans contain escrow payments, obtain new appraisals under certain circumstances, comply with integrated mortgage disclosure rules, and follow specific rules regarding the compensation of loan originators and the servicing of residential mortgage loans.

Risk-retention rules. Banks that sponsor the securitization of asset-backed securities are generally required to retain not less than 5% of the credit risk of any loan they securitize, except for residential mortgages that meet certain low-risk standards.

Transactions with affiliates. There are various restrictions that limit the ability of the Bank to finance, pay dividends or otherwise supply funds to the Company or other affiliates. In addition, banks are subject to certain restrictions under Section 23A and B of the Federal Reserve Act on certain transactions, including any extension of credit to its bank holding company or any of its other affiliates, on investments in the securities thereof, and on the taking of such securities as collateral for loans to any borrower.

Privacy, Credit Reporting and Cybersecurity.  The Bank is subject to federal and state banking regulations that limit its ability to disclose non-public information about consumers to non-affiliated third parties and prescribe standards for the protection of consumer information. These limitations require us to periodically disclose our privacy policies to consumers and allow consumers to prevent disclosure of certain personal information to a non-affiliated third party under certain circumstances.  Consumers also have the option to direct banks and other financial institutions not to share information about transactions and experiences with affiliated companies for the purpose of marketing products or services.  Banking institutions are required to implement a comprehensive information security program that includes administrative, technical, and physical safeguards to ensure the security and confidentiality of customer records and information, as well as maintain procedures for notifying customers in the event of a security breach.  These security and privacy policies and procedures for the protection of confidential and personal information are in effect across our lines of business.  The Company has adopted and implemented our Comprehensive Information Security Policy to comply with these federal requirements. 




The Bank uses credit bureau data in underwriting activities.  Use of such data is regulated under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and Regulation V on a uniform, nationwide basis, including credit reporting, prescreening, and sharing of information between affiliates and the use of credit data.  The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, which amended the Fair Credit Reporting Act, permits states to enact identity theft laws that are not inconsistent with the conduct required by the provisions of that Act.

Furthermore, the federal banking regulators regularly issue guidance regarding cybersecurity intended to enhance cyber risk management. A financial institution is expected to implement multiple lines of defense against cyber attacks and ensure that their risk management procedures address the risk posed by potential cyber threats.  A financial institution is further expected to maintain procedures to effectively respond to a cyber attack and resume operations following any such attack.  The Company has adopted and implemented an Information Security Program to comply with the regulatory cybersecurity guidance.

Debit Interchange Fees. Interchange fees are fees that merchants pay to credit card companies and card-issuing banks such as the Bank for processing electronic payment transactions on their behalf. The maximum permissible interchange fee that an issuer may receive for an electronic debit transaction is the sum of 21 cents per transaction and 5 basis points multiplied by the value of the transaction, subject to an upward adjustment of 1 cent if an issuer certifies that it has implemented policies and procedures reasonably designed to achieve the fraud-prevention standards set forth by the Federal Reserve. In addition, the legislation prohibits card issuers and networks from entering into arrangements requiring that debit card transactions be processed on a single network or only two affiliated networks, and allows merchants to determine transaction routing.

Nonbanking Subsidiaries

The Company’s nonbanking subsidiaries may also be subject to a variety of state and federal laws. For example, Hancock Whitney Investment Services, Inc. is subject to supervision and regulation by the SEC, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the State of Mississippi. 


In June 2010, the federal banking agencies issued joint guidance on executive compensation designed to help ensure that a banking organization’s incentive compensation policies do not encourage imprudent risk taking and are consistent with the safety and soundness of the organization. In addition, in June 2012, the Commission issued final rules to implement the Dodd-Frank Act’s requirement that the Commission direct the national securities exchanges to adopt certain listing standards related to the compensation committee of a company’s board of directors as well as its compensation advisers.

In 2016, the Federal Reserve, FDIC and SEC proposed rules that would, depending upon the assets of the institution, directly regulate incentive compensation arrangements and would require enhanced oversight and recordkeeping.  As of December 31, 2018, these rules had not been implemented.  We have undertaken efforts to ensure that our incentive compensation plans do not encourage inappropriate risks, consistent with three key principles—that incentive compensation arrangements should appropriately balance risk and financial rewards, be compatible with effective controls and risk management, and be supported by strong corporate governance.

Accounting and Controls

The Company is also required to file certain reports with, and otherwise comply with the rules and regulations of the SEC under federal securities laws.   For example, we are required to comply with various corporate governance and financial reporting requirements under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, as well as rules and regulations adopted by the SEC, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, and Nasdaq.  In particular, we are required to include management and independent registered public accounting firm reports on internal controls over financial reporting as part of our Annual Report on Form 10‑K in order to comply with Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.  We have evaluated our controls, including compliance with the SEC rules on internal controls.  The assessments of our financial reporting controls as of December 31, 2018 are included in this report under Item 9A. “Controls and Procedures.”  Our failure to comply with these internal control rules may materially adversely affect our reputation, ability to obtain the necessary certifications to financial statements, and the value of our securities. 

Corporate Governance

The Dodd-Frank Act addresses many investor protection, corporate governance, and executive compensation matters that will affect most U.S. publicly traded companies. The Dodd-Frank Act (1) grants shareholders of U.S. publicly traded companies an advisory vote on executive compensation; (2) enhances independence requirements for Compensation Committee members; and (3) requires companies listed on national securities exchanges to adopt incentive-based compensation clawback policies for executive officers.




Effect of Governmental Monetary and Fiscal Policies

The difference between the interest rate paid on deposits and other borrowings and the interest rate received on loans and securities comprises most of a bank’s earnings. In order to mitigate the interest rate risk inherent in the industry, the banking business is becoming increasingly dependent on the generation of fee and service charge revenue.

The earnings and growth of a bank will be affected by both general economic conditions and the monetary and fiscal policy of the U.S. government and its agencies, particularly the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve sets national monetary policy such as seeking to curb inflation and combat recession. This is accomplished by its open-market operations in U.S. government securities, adjustments in the amount of reserves that financial institutions are required to maintain and adjustments to the discount rates on borrowings and target rates for federal funds transactions. The actions of the Federal Reserve in these areas influence the growth of bank loans, investments and deposits and also affect interest rates on loans and deposits. The nature and timing of any future changes in monetary policies and their potential impact on the Company cannot be predicted.


The names, ages, positions and business experience of our executive officers as of February 28, 2019:














John M. Hairston




President of the Company since 2014; Chief Executive Officer since 2008 and Chief Operating Officer from 2008 to 2014; Director since 2006.

Michael M. Achary




Sr. Executive Vice President since 2017; Executive Vice President from 2008 to 2016; Chief Financial Officer since 2007.

Joseph S. Exnicios




Sr. Executive Vice President since 2017; Executive Vice President from 2011 to 2016; President of Hancock Whitney Bank since 2011.

D. Shane Loper




Sr. Executive Vice President since 2017; Executive Vice President from 2008 to 2016; Chief Operating Officer since 2014; Chief Administrative Officer from 2013 to 2014.

Stephen E. Barker




Executive Vice President since 2016; Chief Accounting Officer since 2011.

Cecil W. Knight, Jr.




Executive Vice President since 2016; Chief Banking Officer since 2016; President and owner of Alidade Partners, LLC from 2012 to 2016.

Joy Lambert Phillips




Executive Vice President since 2009; Corporate Secretary since 2011; General Counsel since 1999.

Christopher S. Ziluca




Executive Vice President since 2018; Chief Credit Officer since 2018; Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer of Webster Bank from 2010 to 2018.






We face a number of significant risks and uncertainties in connection with our operations. Our business, results of operations and financial condition could be materially adversely affected by the factors described below.

While we describe each risk separately, some of these risks are interrelated and certain risks could trigger the applicability of other risks described below. Also, the risks and uncertainties described below are not the only ones that we may face. Additional risks and uncertainties not presently known to us, or that we currently do not consider significant, could also potentially impair, and have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations, and financial condition.

Risks Related to Economic and Market Conditions

We may be vulnerable to certain sectors of the economy and to economic conditions both generally and locally across the specific markets in which we operate.

Our financial performance may be adversely affected by macroeconomic factors that affect the U.S. economy. Unfavorable economic conditions, particularly in the Gulf South region, could significantly affect the demand for our loans and other products, the ability of borrowers to repay loans, and the value of collateral securing loans. 

Volatility in global financial markets may have a spillover effect that would ultimately impair the performance of the U.S. economy and, in turn, our results of operations and financial condition.    

We Are Subject To Lending Concentration Risk.

Our loan portfolio contains several industry and collateral concentrations including, but not limited to, commercial and residential real estate, energy and healthcare.  Due to the high exposure in these concentrations, disruptions in markets, economic conditions, changes in laws or regulations or other events could cause a significant impact of the ability of borrowers to repay and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

A substantial portion of our loan portfolio is secured by real estate. In weak economies, or in areas where real estate market conditions are distressed, we may experience a higher than normal level of nonperforming real estate loans. The collateral value of the portfolio and the revenue stream from those loans could come under stress, and additional provisions for the allowance for loan and lease losses could be necessitated. Our ability to dispose of foreclosed real estate at prices at or above the respective carrying values could also be impaired, causing additional losses.

At December 31, 2018, energy or energy-related loans comprised approximately 5.3% of our loan portfolio. Volatility in commodity prices could have a negative impact on the U.S. economy and, in particular, the economies of energy-dominant states such as Texas and Louisiana, two of our core markets.  Such circumstances could have a material adverse effect on the performance of energy-related businesses and other commercial segments in these markets, and, in turn, on our financial condition and results of operations.


Certain changes in interest rates, mortgage origination, inflation, deflation, or the financial markets could affect our results of operations, demand for our products and our ability to deliver products efficiently.

Our assets and liabilities are primarily monetary in nature and we are subject to significant risks tied to changes in interest rates that are highly sensitive to many factors that are beyond our control. Our ability to operate profitably is largely dependent upon net interest income. Net interest income is the primary component of our earnings and is affected by both local external factors such as economic conditions in the Gulf South and local competition for loans and deposits, as well as broader influences, such as federal monetary policy and market interest rates. Unexpected movement in interest rates markedly changing the slope of the current yield curve could cause our net interest margins to decrease, subsequently reducing net interest income. In addition, such changes could adversely affect the valuation of our assets and liabilities.

As the Federal Reserve Board increases the Fed Funds rate, overall interest rates have also risen, which may negatively impact the U.S. economy.  Further, changes in monetary policy, including changes in interest rates, could influence (i) the amount of interest we receive on loans and securities, (ii) the amount of interest we pay on deposits and borrowings, (iii) our ability to originate loans and obtain deposits, (iv) the fair value of our assets and liabilities, and (v) the reinvestment risk associated with changes in the duration of our mortgage-backed securities portfolio. When interest-bearing liabilities reprice or mature more quickly than interest-earning assets, an increase in interest rates generally would tend to result in a decrease in net interest income.

In addition, loan originations, and potentially loan revenues, could be adversely impacted by sharply rising interest rates. If market rates of interest continue to increase, it would increase debt service requirements for some of our borrowers; adversely affect those




borrowers’ ability to pay as contractually obligated; potentially reduce loan demand or result in additional delinquencies or charge-offs; and increase the cost of our deposits, which are a primary source of funding.

The fair market value of our securities portfolio and the investment income from these securities also fluctuate depending on general economic and market conditions. In addition, actual net investment income and/or cash flows from investments that carry prepayment risk, such as mortgage-backed and other asset-backed securities, may differ from those anticipated at the time of investment as a result of interest rate fluctuations.

We are also subject to the following risks:


an underperforming stock market could adversely affect wealth management fees associated with managed securities portfolios and could also reduce brokerage transactions, therefore reducing investment brokerage revenues; and


an increase in inflation could cause our operating costs related to salaries and benefits, technology, and supplies to increase at a faster pace than revenues.

Although management believes it has implemented an effective asset and liability management strategy to manage the potential effects of changes in interest rates, including the use of adjustable rate and/or short-term assets, and FHLB advances or longer term repurchase agreements, any substantial, unexpected, prolonged change in market interest rates could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of our operation and our strategies may not always be successful in managing the risk associated with changes in interest rates.

The financial soundness and stability of other financial institutions could adversely affect us.

Our ability to engage in routine funding transactions could be adversely affected by the actions and financial soundness and stability of other financial institutions as a result of credit, trading, clearing or other relationships with such institutions. We routinely execute transactions with counterparties in the financial industry, including brokers and dealers, commercial banks and other institutional clients. As a result, defaults by, and even rumors regarding, other financial institutions, or the financial services industry generally, could impair our ability to effect such transactions and could lead to losses or defaults by us. In addition, a number of our transactions expose us to credit risk in the event of default of a counterparty or client. Additionally, our credit risk may be increased if the collateral we hold in connection with such transactions cannot be realized or can only be liquidated at prices that are not sufficient to cover the full amount of our financial exposure. Any such losses could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

Changes in the policies of monetary authorities and other government action could adversely affect our profitability.

Our financial performance is affected by credit policies of monetary authorities, particularly the Federal Reserve. The instruments of monetary policy employed by the Federal Reserve include open market transactions in U.S. government securities, changes in the discount rate or the federal funds rate on bank borrowings and changes in reserve requirements against bank deposits. In view of changing conditions in the national economy and in the money markets, we cannot predict the potential impact of future changes in interest rates, deposit levels, and loan demand on our business and earnings. Furthermore, the actions of the U.S. government and other governments may result in currency fluctuations, exchange controls, market disruption, material decreases in the values of certain of our financial assets and other adverse effects.

We May Be Adversely Impacted By the Transition from LIBOR

In July 2017, the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority (the authority that regulates LIBOR) announced it intends to stop compelling banks to submit rates for the calculation of LIBOR after 2021. The Alternative Reference Rates Committee (“ARRC”) has proposed that the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (“SOFR”) is the rate that represents best practice as the alternative to USD-LIBOR for use in derivatives and other financial contracts that are currently indexed to USD-LIBOR. ARRC has proposed a paced market transition plan to SOFR from USD-LIBOR and organizations are currently considering industry wide and company-specific transition plans as it relates to derivatives and cash markets exposed to USD-LIBOR. We have  a material number of contracts that are indexed to USD-LIBOR and have formed an internal working group to monitor this activity and evaluate and address related risks.  

If LIBOR ceases to exist or if the methods of calculating LIBOR change from current methods for any reason, interest rates on our floating rate obligations, loans, derivatives, and other financial instruments tied to LIBOR rates, as well as the revenue and expenses associated with those financial instruments, may be adversely affected. Any uncertainty regarding the continued use and reliability of LIBOR as a benchmark interest rate could adversely affect the value of our floating rate obligations, loans, derivatives, and other financial instruments tied to LIBOR rates.

A substantial portion of our variable rate loans are indexed to LIBOR.  While many of these loans contain either provisions for the designation of an alternate benchmark rate or “fallback” provisions providing for alternative rate calculations in the event LIBOR is




unavailable, not all of our loans, derivatives or financial instruments contain such provisions, and the existing provisions may not adequately address the actual changes to LIBOR or the financial impact of successor benchmark rates.  We may not be able to successfully amend these loans, derivatives and financial instruments to provide for alternative benchmarks or alternative rate calculations and such amendments could prove costly.  Even with provisions allowing for designation of alternative benchmarks or “fallback” provisions, changes to or the discontinuance of LIBOR could result in customer uncertainty and disputes arising as a consequence of the transition from LIBOR. All of this could result in damage to our reputation, loss of customers and additional costs to us, all of which could be material.

Tax law and regulatory changes could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted on December 22, 2017 provided significant changes to U.S. corporate and individual tax laws.  Future changes to tax laws, including a repeal of all or part of this Act, could significantly impact our business in the form of greater than expected income tax expense. Such changes may also negatively impact the financial condition of our customers and/or overall economic conditions. 

Governmental responses to market disruptions and other events may be inadequate and may have unintended consequences.

Congress and financial regulators may implement measures designed to stabilize financial markets in periods of disruption.  The overall impact of these efforts on the financial markets may be unclear and could adversely affect our business.

We compete with a number of financial services companies that are not subject to the same degree of regulatory oversight. The impact of the existing regulatory framework and any future changes to it could negatively affect our ability to compete with these institutions, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and prospects.

We may need to rely on the financial markets to provide needed capital.

Our common stock is listed and traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. If our capital resources prove in the future to be inadequate to meet our capital requirements, we may need to raise additional debt or equity capital. If conditions in the capital markets are not favorable, we may be constrained in raising capital. We maintain a consistent analyst following; therefore, downgrades in our prospects by one or more of our analysts may cause our stock price to fall and significantly limit our ability to access the markets for additional capital requirements. An inability to raise additional capital on acceptable terms when and if needed could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.

The interest rates that we pay on our securities are also influenced by, among other things, the credit ratings that we, our affiliates and/or our securities receive from recognized rating agencies. Our credit ratings are based on a number of factors, including our financial strength and some factors not entirely within our control such as conditions affecting the financial services industry generally, and remain subject to change at any time. A downgrade to the credit rating of us or our affiliates could affect our ability to access the capital markets, increase our borrowing costs and negatively impact our profitability. A downgrade to us, our affiliates or our securities could create obligations or liabilities to us under the terms of our outstanding securities that could increase our costs or otherwise have a negative effect on our results of operations or financial condition. Additionally, a downgrade to the credit rating of any particular security issued by us or our affiliates could negatively affect the ability of the holders of that security to sell the securities and the prices at which any such securities may be sold.

Because our decision to incur debt and issue securities in future offerings will depend on market conditions and other factors beyond our control, we cannot predict or estimate the amount, timing or nature of our future offerings and debt financings. Further, market conditions could require us to accept less favorable terms for the issuance of our securities in the future. In addition, geopolitical and worldwide market conditions may cause disruption or volatility in the U.S. equity and debt markets, which could hinder our ability to issue debt and equity securities in the future on favorable terms.

Securities analysts might not continue coverage on our common stock, which could adversely affect the market for our common stock.

The trading price of our common stock depends in part on the research and reports that securities analysts publish about us and our business.  We do not have any control over these analysts, and they may not continue to cover our common stock.  If securities analysts do not continue to cover our common stock, the lack of research coverage may adversely affect the market price of our common stock.  If securities analysts continue to cover our common stock, and our common stock is the subject of an unfavorable report, the price of our common stock may decline.   If one or more of these analysts cease to cover us or fail to publish regular reports on us, we could lose visibility in the financial markets, which could cause the price or trading volume of our common stock to decline.




Risks Related to the Financial Services Industry

We must maintain adequate sources of funding and liquidity.

Effective liquidity management is essential for the operation of our business. We require sufficient liquidity to support our operations and fund outstanding liabilities, as well as to meet regulatory requirements. Our access to sources of liquidity in amounts adequate to fund our activities on terms that are acceptable to us could be impaired by factors that affect us specifically or the financial services industry or economy generally. Factors that could detrimentally impact our access to liquidity sources include an economic downturn that affects the geographic markets in which our loans and operations are concentrated, or any material deterioration of the credit markets. Our access to deposits may also be affected by the liquidity needs of our depositors and the loss of deposits to alternative investments. Although we have historically been successful in replacing maturing deposits and advances as necessary, we might not be able to duplicate that success in the future, especially if a large number of our depositors were to withdraw their amounts on deposit. A failure to maintain an adequate level of liquidity could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

We may rely on the mortgage secondary market from time to time to provide liquidity.

From time to time, we have sold to certain agencies certain types of mortgage loans that meet their conforming loan requirements in order to reduce our interest rate risk and provide liquidity. There is a risk that these agencies will limit or discontinue their purchases of loans that are conforming due to capital constraints, a change in the criteria for conforming loans or other factors. Additionally, various proposals have been made to reform the U.S. residential mortgage finance market, including the role of the agencies. The exact effects of any such reforms are not yet known, but may limit our ability to sell conforming loans to the agencies. If we are unable to continue to sell conforming loans to the agencies, our ability to fund, and thus originate, additional mortgage loans may be adversely affected, which would in turn adversely affect our results of operations.

Greater loan losses than expected may adversely affect our earnings.

We are exposed to the risk that our borrowers will be unable to repay their loans in accordance with their terms and that any collateral securing the payment of their loans may not be sufficient to assure repayment. Credit risk is inherent in our business and any material level of credit failure could have a material adverse effect on our operating results. Our credit risk with respect to our real estate and construction loan portfolio relates principally to the creditworthiness of our corporate borrowers and the value of the real estate pledged as security for the repayment of loans. Our credit risk with respect to our commercial and consumer loan portfolio will depend on the general creditworthiness of businesses and individuals within our local markets. Our credit risk with respect to our energy loan portfolio is subject to commodity pricing that is determined by factors outside of our control.

We make various assumptions and judgments about the collectability of our loan portfolio and provide an allowance for estimated loan losses based on a number of factors. This process requires difficult, subjective and complex judgments, including analysis of economic or market conditions that might impair the ability of borrowers to repay their loans. If our assumptions or judgments prove to be incorrect, the allowance for loan losses may not be sufficient to cover actual loan losses. We may have to increase our allowance in the future in response to the request of one of our primary banking regulators, to adjust for changing conditions and assumptions, or as a result of any deterioration in the quality of our loan portfolio. Losses in excess of the existing allowance or any provisions for loan losses taken to increase the allowance will reduce our net income and could materially adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. Future provisions for loan losses may vary materially from the amounts of past provisions.

We depend on the accuracy and completeness of information about clients and counterparties.

In deciding whether to extend credit or enter into other transactions with clients and counterparties, we rely in substantial part on information furnished by or on behalf of clients and counterparties, including financial statements and other financial information. We also may rely on representations of clients and counterparties as to the accuracy and completeness of that information and, with respect to financial statements, on reports of independent auditors if made available. If this information is inaccurate, we may be subject to loan defaults, financial losses, regulatory action, reputational harm or other adverse effects with respect to our business, financial condition and results of operations.

We are subject to a variety of risks in connection with any sale of loans we may conduct.

From time to time we may sell all or a portion of one of more loan portfolios, and in connection therewith we may make certain representations and warranties to the purchaser concerning the loans sold and the procedures under which those loans have been originated and serviced. If any of these representations and warranties are incorrect, we may be required to indemnify the purchaser for any related losses, or we may be required to repurchase part or all of the affected loans. We may also be required to repurchase loans as a result of borrower fraud or in the event of early payment default by the borrower on a loan we have sold. If we are required to make any indemnity payments or repurchases and do not have a remedy available to us against a solvent counterparty to the loan or




loans, we may not be able to recover our losses resulting from these indemnity payments and repurchases. Consequently, our results of operations may be adversely affected.

Risks Related to Our Operations

A failure in our operational systems or infrastructure, or those of third parties, could impair our liquidity, disrupt our businesses, result in the unauthorized disclosure of confidential information, damage our reputation and cause financial losses.

Our ability to adequately conduct and grow our business is dependent on our ability to create and maintain an appropriate operational and organizational control infrastructure. Operational risk can arise in numerous ways including employee fraud, theft or malfeasance; customer fraud; and control lapses in bank operations and information technology. Because the nature of the financial services business involves a high volume of transactions, certain errors in processing or recording transactions appropriately may be repeated or compounded before they are discovered. Our dependence on our employees and automated systems, including the automated systems used by acquired entities and third parties, to record and process transactions may further increase the risk that technical failures or tampering of those systems will result in losses that are difficult to detect. We are also subject to disruptions of our operating systems arising from events that are wholly or partially beyond our control. In addition, products, services and processes are continually changing and we may not fully appreciate or identify new operational risks that may arise from such changes. Failure to maintain an appropriate operational infrastructure can lead to loss of service to customers, additional expenditures related to the detection and correction of operational failures, reputational damage and loss of customer confidence, legal actions, and noncompliance with various laws and regulations.

We continuously monitor our operational and technological capabilities and make modifications and improvements when we believe it will be cost effective to do so. However, there are inherent limits to such capabilities. In some instances, we may build and maintain these capabilities ourselves. We also outsource some of these functions to third parties. These third parties may experience errors or disruptions that could adversely impact us and over which we may have limited control. Third parties may fail to properly perform services or comply with applicable laws and regulations, and replacing third party providers could entail significant delay and expense. We also face risk from the integration of new infrastructure platforms and/or new third party providers of such platforms into existing businesses.

Our operational and communications systems and infrastructure may fail or may be the subject of a breach or cyber-attack that, if successful, could adversely affect our business and disrupt business continuity.

We depend on our ability to process, record and monitor a large number of client transactions and to communicate with clients and other institutions on a continuous basis. Our clients depend on us for access to their assets and account information. As client, industry, public and regulatory expectations regarding operational and information security have increased, our operational systems and infrastructure continue to be safeguarded and monitored for potential failures, disruptions and breakdowns, whether as a result of events beyond our control or otherwise.

Our online, business, financial, accounting, data processing, or other operating systems and facilities may stop operating properly or become disabled or damaged as a result of a number of factors, including events that are wholly or partially beyond our control. For example, there could be sudden increases in client transaction volume; electrical or telecommunications outages; natural disasters such as earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and hurricanes; disease pandemics; events arising from local or larger scale political or social matters, including terrorist acts; occurrences of employee error, fraud, or malfeasance; and, as described below, cyber-attacks.

Although we have response plans, business continuity plans and other safeguards in place, our operations and communications may be adversely affected by significant and widespread disruption to our systems and infrastructure that support our businesses and clients. While we continue to evolve and modify our response and business continuity plans, there can be no assurance in an escalating threat environment that they will be effective in avoiding disruption and business impacts. Our insurance may not be adequate to compensate us for all resulting losses, and the cost to obtain adequate coverage may increase for us or the industry.

Security risks for financial institutions such as ours have dramatically increased in recent years, in part because of the proliferation of new technologies, the use of the internet and telecommunications technologies to conduct financial transactions, and the increased sophistication, resources and activities of hackers, terrorists, activists, organized crime, and other external parties, including nation state actors. In addition, clients may use devices or software to access our products and services that are beyond our control environment, which may provide additional avenues for attackers to gain access to confidential information. Although we have information security procedures and controls in place, certain of our technologies, systems, networks, and clients’ devices and software have in the past and in the future likely will continue to be the target of cyber-attacks or information security breaches that could result in the unauthorized release, gathering, monitoring, use, loss, change or destruction of our or our clients’ confidential, proprietary and other information (including personal identifying information of individuals), or otherwise disrupt our or our clients’ or other third parties’ business operations. Further, U.S. financial institutions and financial services companies will continue to face breaches in security of their websites or other systems, including attempts to shut down access to their networks and systems in an




attempt to extract compensation from them to regain control. Financial institutions have also experienced, and will continue to be the target of, distributed denial-of-service attacks, a sophisticated and targeted attack intended to disable or degrade internet service or to sabotage systems.

We and others in our industry are, and will continue to be, regularly the subject of attempts by attackers to gain unauthorized access to our networks, systems, data and other infrastructure, or to obtain, change, or destroy confidential data (including personal identifying information of individuals) through a variety of means, including computer hacking, acts of vandalism or theft, malware, computer viruses or other malicious codes, phishing, employee error or malfeasance, catastrophes, unforeseen events or other cyber-attacks. In the future, these attacks may result in unauthorized individuals obtaining access to our confidential information or that of our clients, or otherwise accessing, damaging, or disrupting our systems or infrastructure.

To date, we have seen no material impact on our business or operations from cyber attacks or events. Any future significant compromise or breach of our data security, whether external or internal, or misuse of customer, associate, supplier or Company data, could result in significant disruption of our operations, reimbursement and other costs, lost sales, fines, lawsuits and other legal exposure, a loss of trust in us on the part of our clients, vendors or other counterparties, client attrition and damage to our reputation. Any of these could materially and adversely affect our results of operations, our financial condition, and/or our share price. However, the ever-evolving threats mean we and our third-party service providers and vendors must continually evaluate and adapt our respective systems and processes and overall security environment, as well as those of any companies we acquire. We are continuously enhancing our controls, processes and practices designed to protect our networks, systems, data and other infrastructure from attack, damage or unauthorized access. This continued enhancement will require us to expend additional resources, including to investigate and remediate any information security vulnerabilities that may be detected. Despite our ongoing investments in security resources, talent, and business practices, there is no guarantee that these measures will be adequate to safeguard against all data security breaches, system compromises or misuses of data.


We must attract and retain skilled personnel.

Our success depends, in substantial part, on our ability to attract and retain skilled, experienced personnel in key positions within the organization. Competition for qualified candidates in the activities and markets that we serve is intense. If we are not able to hire or retain these key individuals, we may be unable to execute our business strategies and may suffer adverse consequences to our business, financial condition and results of operations.

If we are unable to attract and retain qualified employees, or do so at rates insufficient to maintain our competitive position, or if compensation costs required to attract and retain employees increase materially, our business and results of operations could be materially adversely affected.

Natural and man-made disasters could affect our ability to operate.

Our market areas are susceptible to hurricanes. Natural disasters, such as hurricanes and flooding and man-made disasters, such as oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico, can disrupt our operations; result in significant damage to our properties or properties and businesses of our borrowers, including property pledged as collateral; interrupt our ability to conduct business; and negatively affect the local economies in which we operate.

We cannot predict whether or to what extent damage caused by future hurricanes and other disasters will affect our operations or the economies in our market areas, but such events could cause a decline in loan originations, a decline in the value or destruction of properties securing the loans and an increase in the risk of delinquencies, foreclosures or loan losses.

We are exposed to reputational risk.

Negative public opinion can result from our actual or alleged improper activities, such as lending practices, data security breaches, corporate governance policies and decisions, and acquisitions, any of which may damage our reputation. Additionally, actions taken by government regulators and community organizations may also damage our reputation. Negative public opinion could adversely affect our ability to attract and retain customers or expose us to litigation and regulatory action.

Returns on pension plan assets may not be adequate to cover future funding requirements.

Investments in the portfolio of our defined benefit pension plan may not provide adequate returns to fully fund benefits as they come due, thus causing higher annual plan expenses and requiring additional contributions by us to the defined benefit pension plan.




The value of our goodwill and other intangible assets may decline in the future.

A significant decline in our expected future cash flows, a significant adverse change in the business climate, slower growth rates or a significant and sustained decline in the price of our common stock may necessitate our taking charges in the future to reflect an impairment of our goodwill. Future regulatory actions could also have a material impact on assessments of goodwill for impairment.

Adverse events or circumstances could impact the recoverability of our intangible assets including loss of core deposits, significant losses of credit card accounts and/or balances, increased competition or adverse changes in the economy. To the extent these intangible assets are deemed unrecoverable, a non-cash impairment charge would be recorded, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.

Risks Related to Our Business Strategy

We are subject to industry competition which may have an impact upon our success.


Our profitability depends on our ability to compete successfully in a highly competitive market for banking and financial services, and we expect such challenges to continue. Certain of our competitors are larger and have more resources than we do. We face competition in our regional market areas from other commercial banks, savings associations, credit unions, mortgage banking firms, consumer finance companies, securities brokerage firms, mutual funds and insurance companies, and other financial institutions that offer similar services. Some of our nonbank competitors are not subject to the same extensive supervision and regulation to which we or the Bank are subject, and may accordingly have greater flexibility in competing for business. Over time, certain sectors of the financial services industry have become more concentrated, as institutions involved in a broad range of financial services have been acquired by other firms. These developments could result in our competitors gaining greater capital and other resources, or being able to offer a broader range of products and services with more geographic range.


Another competitive factor is that the financial services market, including banking services, is undergoing rapid changes with frequent introductions of new technology-driven products and services. Our future success may depend, in part, on our ability to use technology competitively to offer products and services that provide convenience to customers and create additional efficiencies in our operations. The widespread adoption of new technologies will require us to make substantial capital expenditures to modify or adapt our systems to remain competitive and offer new products and services. Our ability to effectively implement new technologies to improve our operations and systems will impact our competitive position in the financial services industry. Furthermore, we may not be successful in introducing new products and services in response to industry trends or developments in technology, or those new products may not be accepted by customers.


If we are unable to successfully compete for new customers and to retain our current customers, our business, financial condition or results of operations may also be adversely affected, perhaps materially. In particular, if we experience an outflow of deposits as a result of our customers desiring to do business with our competitors, we may be forced to rely more heavily on borrowings and other sources of funding to operate our business and meet withdrawal demands, thereby adversely affecting our net interest margin. 

The implementation of other new lines of business or new products and services may subject us to additional risk.

We continuously evaluate our service offerings and may implement new lines of business or offer new products and services within existing lines of business in the future. There are substantial risks and uncertainties associated with these efforts.  In developing and marketing new lines of business and/or new products and services, we undergo a new product process to assess the risks of the initiative, and invest significant time and resources to build internal controls, policies and procedures to mitigate those risks, including hiring experienced management to oversee the implementation of the initiative.  Initial timetables for the introduction and development of new lines of business and/or new products or services may not be achieved and price and profitability targets may not prove feasible. External factors, such as compliance with regulations, competitive alternatives, and shifting market preferences, may also impact the successful implementation of a new line of business and/or a new product or service. Furthermore, any new line of business and/or new product or service could require the establishment of new key and other controls and have a significant impact on our existing system of internal controls. Failure to successfully manage these risks in the development and implementation of new lines of business and/or new products or services could have a material adverse effect on our business and, in turn, our financial condition and results of operations.

Our future growth and financial performance may be negatively affected if we are unable to successfully execute our growth plans, which may include acquisitions and de novo branching.

We may not be able to continue our organic, or internal, growth, which depends upon economic conditions, our ability to identify appropriate markets for expansion, our ability to recruit and retain qualified personnel, our ability to fund growth at a reasonable cost, sufficient capital to support our growth initiatives, competitive factors, banking laws, and other factors.




We may seek to supplement our internal growth through acquisitions. We cannot predict the number, size or timing of acquisitions, or whether any such acquisition will occur at all. Our acquisition efforts have traditionally focused on targeted banking entities in markets in which we currently operate and markets in which we believe we can compete effectively. However, as consolidation of the financial services industry continues, the competition for suitable acquisition candidates may increase and, as the number of appropriate targets decreases, the prices for potential acquisitions could increase which could reduce our potential returns, and reduce the attractiveness of these opportunities to us. We may compete with other financial services companies for acquisition opportunities, and many of these competitors have greater financial resources than we do and may be able to pay more for an acquisition than we are able or willing to pay.

We also may be required to use a substantial amount of our available cash and other liquid assets, or seek additional debt or equity financing, to fund future acquisitions. Such events could make us more susceptible to economic downturns and competitive pressures, and additional debt service requirements may impose a significant burden on our results of operations and financial condition. If we are unable to locate suitable acquisition candidates willing to sell on terms acceptable to us, or we are otherwise unable to obtain additional debt or equity financing necessary for us to continue making acquisitions, we would be required to find other methods to grow our business and we may not grow at the same rate we have in the past, or at all.

We must generally satisfy several conditions, including receiving federal regulatory approval, before we can acquire a bank or bank holding company. In determining whether to approve a proposed bank acquisition, federal bank regulators will consider, among other factors, the effect of the acquisition on competition, financial condition, and future prospects. The regulators also review current and projected capital ratios and levels; the competence, experience, and integrity of management and its record of compliance with laws and regulations; the convenience and needs of the communities to be served (including the acquiring institution’s record of compliance under the Community Reinvestment Act) and the effectiveness of the acquiring institution in combating money laundering activities. We cannot be certain when or if, or on what terms and conditions, any required regulatory approvals will be granted. We may also be required to sell banks or branches as a condition to receiving regulatory approval, which condition may not be acceptable to us or, if acceptable to us, may reduce the benefit of any acquisition. Additionally, federal and/or state regulators may charge us with regulatory and compliance failures of an acquired business that occurred prior to the date of acquisition, and such failures may result in the imposition of formal or informal enforcement actions.

We cannot assure you that we will be able to successfully consolidate any business or assets we acquire with our existing business. The integration of acquired operations and assets may require substantial management effort, time and resources and may divert management’s focus from other strategic opportunities and operational matters. Acquisitions may not perform as expected when the transaction was consummated and may be dilutive to our overall operating results and stockholders’ equity per share of common stock. Specifically, acquisitions could result in higher than expected deposit attrition, loss of key employees or other consequences that could adversely affect our ability to maintain relationships with customers and employees. We may also sell or consider selling one or more of our businesses. Such a sale would generally be subject to certain federal and/or state regulatory approvals, and may not be able to generate gains on sale or related increases in shareholder’s equity commensurate with desirable levels.

In addition to the acquisition of existing financial institutions, as opportunities arise, we plan to continue de novo branching as a part of our internal growth strategy and possibly enter into new markets through de novo branching. De novo branching and any acquisition carry numerous risks, including the following:


the inability to obtain all required regulatory approvals;


significant costs and anticipated operating losses associated with establishing a de novo branch or a new bank;


the inability to secure the services of qualified senior management;


the failure of the local market to accept the services of a new bank owned and managed by a bank holding company headquartered outside of the market area of the new bank;


economic downturns in the new market;


the inability to obtain attractive locations within a new market at a reasonable cost; and


the additional strain on management resources and internal systems and controls.

We have experienced, to some extent, many of these risks with our de novo branching to date.

Changes in retail distribution strategies and consumer behavior may adversely impact our investments in bank premises, equipment, technology and other assets and may lead to increased expenditures to change our retail distribution channel.

We have significant investments in bank premises and equipment for our branch network.  Advances in technology such as e-commerce, telephone, internet and mobile banking, and in-branch self-service technologies including automated teller machines and other equipment, as well as an increasing customer preference for these other methods of accessing our products and services, could




decrease the value of our branch network, technology, or other retail distribution physical assets and may cause us to change our retail distribution strategy, close and/or sell certain branches or parcels of land held for development and restructure or reduce our remaining branches and work force. These actions could lead to losses on these assets or could adversely impact the carrying value of any long-lived assets and may lead to increased expenditures to renovate, reconfigure or close a number of our remaining branches or to otherwise reform our retail distribution channel.

Risks Related to the Legal and Regulatory Environment

We are subject to regulation by various federal and state entities.

We are subject to the regulations of the Commission, the Federal Reserve, the FDIC, the CFPB and the MDBCF. New regulations issued by these or other agencies may adversely affect our ability to carry on our business activities. We are subject to various federal and state laws, and certain changes in these laws and regulations may adversely affect our operations. Other than the federal securities laws, the laws and regulations governing our business are intended primarily for the protection of our depositors, our customers, the financial system and the FDIC insurance fund, not our shareholders or other creditors. Further, we must obtain approval from our regulators before engaging in certain activities, and our regulators have the ability to compel us to, or restrict us from, taking certain actions entirely, such as increasing dividends, entering into merger or acquisition transactions, acquiring or establishing new branches, and entering into certain new businesses. Noncompliance with certain of these regulations may impact our business plans, including our ability to branch, offer certain products, or execute existing or planned business strategies.

For additional information regarding laws and regulations to which our business is subject, see “Supervision and Regulation.”

Any of the laws or regulations to which we are subject, including tax laws, regulations or their interpretations, may be modified or changed from time to time, and we cannot be assured that such modifications or changes will not adversely affect us. Failure to appropriately comply with any such laws or regulations could result in sanctions by regulatory authorities, civil monetary penalties or damage to our reputation, all of which could adversely affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.

In addition, as the regulatory environment related to information security, data collection and use, and privacy becomes increasingly rigorous, with new and constantly changing requirements applicable to our business, compliance with those requirements could also result in additional costs.

Changes in accounting policies or in accounting standards could materially affect how we report our financial condition and results of operations.

The preparation of consolidated financial statements in conformity with U.S generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”), including the accounting rules and regulations of the Commission and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (the “FASB”), requires management to make significant estimates and assumptions that impact our financial statements by affecting the value of our assets or liabilities and results of operations. Some of our accounting policies are critical because they require management to make difficult, subjective and complex judgments about matters that are inherently uncertain and because materially different amounts may be reported if different estimates or assumptions are used. If such estimates or assumptions underlying our financial statements are incorrect, our financial condition and results of operations could be adversely affected.

From time to time, the FASB and the Commission change the financial accounting and reporting standards or the interpretation of such standards that govern the preparation of our external financial statements. These changes are beyond our control, can be difficult to predict, may require extraordinary efforts or additional costs to implement and could materially impact how we report our financial condition and results of operations. Additionally, we may be required to apply a new or revised standard retrospectively, resulting in the restatement of prior period financial statements in material amounts. 

Accounting Standards Update 2016-13, “Financial Instruments - Credit Losses (Topic 326): Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments,” (commonly referred to as CECL) changes the approach to recognizing credit losses from an “incurred loss” methodology. Under the incurred loss methodology, credit losses are recognized only when the losses are probable or have been incurred; under CECL, entities are required to recognize the full amount of expected credit losses for the lifetime of the financial assets, based on historical experience, current conditions and reasonable and supportable forecasts. The provisions of this Update are effective January 1, 2020. While we have not yet quantified the financial impact, we expect an increase in the Allowance for Loan Losses upon adoption, the extent of which is dependent upon the composition of the portfolio as well as economic conditions and forecasts at that time. Such circumstance may result in an unfavorable impact to our results of operations and our capital level.




We and other financial institutions have been the subject of litigation, investigations and other proceedings which could result in legal liability and damage to our reputation.

We and certain of our directors, officers and subsidiaries may be named from time to time as defendants in various class actions and other litigation relating to our business and activities. Past, present and future litigation has included or could include claims for substantial compensatory and/or punitive damages or claims for indeterminate amounts of damages. We are also involved from time to time in other reviews, investigations and proceedings (both formal and informal) by governmental, law enforcement and self-regulatory agencies regarding our business. These matters could result in adverse judgments, settlements, fines, penalties, injunctions, amendments and/or restatements of our Commission filings and/or financial statements, determinations of material weaknesses in our disclosure controls and procedures or other relief. Like other financial institutions and companies, we are also subject to risk from employee misconduct, including non-compliance with policies and improper use or disclosure of confidential information. Substantial legal liability or significant regulatory action against us, as well as matters in which we are involved that are ultimately determined in our favor, could materially adversely affect our business, financial condition or results of operations, cause significant reputational harm to our business, divert management attention from the operation of our business and/or result in additional litigation.

In addition, in recent years, a number of judicial decisions have upheld the right of borrowers to sue lending institutions on the basis of various evolving legal theories, collectively termed “lender liability.” Generally, lender liability is founded on the premise that a lender has either violated a duty, whether implied or contractual, of good faith and fair dealing owed to the borrower or has assumed a degree of control over the borrower resulting in the creation of a fiduciary duty owed to the borrower or its other creditors or shareholders. We have been and in the future could become subject to claims based on this or other evolving legal theories.

Risks Related to Our Common Stock

Future issuances of equity securities could dilute the interests of holders of our common stock, and our common stock ranks junior to indebtedness.

Our common stock ranks junior to all of our existing and future indebtedness with respect to distributions and liquidation. In addition, future issuances of equity securities, including pursuant to outstanding options, could dilute the interests of our existing shareholders, including you, and could cause the market price of our common stock to decline. Moreover, to the extent that we issue restricted stock units, phantom shares, stock appreciation rights, options or warrants to purchase our common stock in the future and those stock appreciation rights, options or warrants are exercised or as the restricted stock units vest, our shareholders may experience further dilution.

Holders of our shares of common stock do not have preemptive rights. Additionally, sales of a substantial number of shares of our common stock in the public markets and the availability of those shares for sale could adversely affect the market price of our common stock.

Our ability to deliver and pay dividends depends primarily upon the results of operations of our subsidiary Bank, and we may not pay, or be permitted to pay, dividends in the future.

We are a bank holding company that conducts substantially all of our operations through our subsidiary Bank. As a result, our ability to make dividend payments on our common stock will depend primarily upon the receipt of dividends and other distributions from the Bank.

The ability of the Bank to pay dividends or make other payments to us, as well as our ability to pay dividends on our common stock, is limited by the Bank’s obligation to maintain sufficient capital and by other general regulatory restrictions on its dividends, which have tightened since the financial crisis. The Federal Reserve has stated that bank holding companies should not pay dividends from sources other than current earnings. If these requirements are not satisfied, we will be unable to pay dividends on our common stock.

We may also decide to limit the payment of dividends even when we have the legal ability to pay them in order to retain earnings for use in our business, which could adversely affect the market value of our common stock. There can be no assurance of whether or when we may pay dividends in the future.

Mississippi law, and anti-takeover provisions in our amended articles of incorporation and bylaws could make a third-party acquisition of us difficult and may adversely affect share value.

Our amended articles of incorporation and bylaws contain provisions that make it more difficult for a third party to acquire us (even if doing so might be beneficial to our shareholders) and for holders of our securities to receive any related takeover premium for their securities.




We are also subject to certain provisions of state and federal law and our articles of incorporation that may make it more difficult for someone to acquire control of us. Under federal law, subject to certain exemptions, a person, entity, or group must notify the federal banking agencies before acquiring 10% or more of the outstanding voting stock of a bank holding company, including shares of our common stock. Banking agencies review the acquisition to determine if it will result in a change of control. The banking agencies have 60 days to act on the notice, and take into account several factors, including the resources of the acquirer and the antitrust effects of the acquisition. Additionally, a bank holding company must obtain the prior approval of the Federal Reserve before, among other things, acquiring direct or indirect ownership or control of more than 5% of the voting shares of any bank. There are also Mississippi statutory provisions and provisions in our articles of incorporation that may be used to delay or block a takeover attempt. As a result, these statutory provisions and provisions in our articles of incorporation could result in our being less attractive to a potential acquirer and limit the price that investors might be willing to pay in the future for shares of our common stock.

Shares of our common stock are not insured deposits and may lose value.

Shares of our common stock are not savings accounts, deposits or other obligations of any depository institution and are not insured or guaranteed by the FDIC or any other governmental agency or instrumentality, any other deposit insurance fund or by any other public or private entity, and are subject to investment risk, including the possible loss of principal.







The Company’s main office, which is the headquarters of the holding company, is located at Hancock Whitney Plaza, in Gulfport, Mississippi. The Bank makes portions of their main office facilities and certain other facilities available for lease to third parties, although such incidental leasing activity is not material to the Company’s overall operations.

The Company operates 206 full service banking and financial services offices and 270 automated teller machines across the Gulf south corridor comprising south Mississippi; southern and central Alabama; southern Louisiana; the northern, central, and Panhandle regions of Florida; and Houston and Beaumont, Texas. Additionally, the Company operates a loan production office in Nashville, Tennessee and five trust and asset management offices in New York, New Jersey, Mississippi and Texas. The Company owns approximately 48% of these facilities, and the remaining banking facilities are subject to leases, each of which we consider reasonable and appropriate for its location. We ensure that all properties, whether owned or leased, are maintained in suitable condition. We also evaluate our banking facilities on an ongoing basis to identify possible under-utilization and to determine the need for functional improvements, relocations, closures or possible sales. The Bank and subsidiaries of the Bank hold a variety of property interests acquired in settlement of loans. Some of these properties were acquired in transactions before 1979 and are carried at nominal amounts on our balance sheet and reflected a net gain of $1.6 million in our operating results in 2018. 


We and our subsidiaries are party to various legal proceedings arising in the ordinary course of business. We do not believe that loss contingencies, if any, arising from pending litigation and regulatory matters will have a material adverse effect on our consolidated financial position or liquidity. 


Not applicable.







Market Information

The Company’s common stock trades on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol “HWC.” There were 8,306 active holders of record of the Company’s common stock at January 31, 2019 and 85,686,848 shares outstanding.

Stock Performance Graph 

The following performance graph and related information are neither “soliciting material” nor “filed” with the SEC, nor shall such information be incorporated by reference into any future filings under the Securities Act of 1933 or the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, each as amended, except to the extent the Company specifically incorporates it by reference into such filing.

The performance graph compares the cumulative five-year shareholder return on the Company’s common stock, assuming an investment of $100 on December 31, 2013 and the reinvestment of dividends thereafter, to that of the common stocks of United States companies reported in the Nasdaq Total Return Index and the common stocks of the KBW Regional Banks Total Return Index. The KBW Regional Banks Total Return Index is a proprietary stock index of Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, Inc., that tracks the returns of 50 regional banking companies throughout the United States.

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Equity Compensation Plan Information

The following table provides information as of December 31, 2018 with respect to shares of common stock that may be issued under the Company’s equity compensation plans.




















Number of Securities to be Issued Upon Exercise of Outstanding Options, Warrants and Rights



Weighted-Average Exercise Price of Outstanding Options, Warrants and Rights



Number of Securities Remaining Available for Future Issuance Under Equity Compensation Plans (Excluding Securities Reflected in Column (a))

Plan Category









Equity compensation plans approved by security holders











Includes 61,808 shares potentially issuable upon the vesting of outstanding restricted share units and 2,858 shares potentially issuable upon the vesting of outstanding performance share units that represent awards deferred into the Company’s Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Plan. Also includes 106,914 of performance stock awards. If the highest level of performance conditions is met, the total performance shares would be 203,328 and the total performance share units would be 5,716.


The weighted average exercise price relates only to the exercise of outstanding options included in column (a). 

Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

On May 24, 2018, the Company’s board of directors approved a stock buyback program that authorized the repurchase of up to 5%, or approximately 4.3 million shares of its outstanding common stock. The stock buyback program expires on December 31, 2019, and may be terminated or amended by the board of directors at any time prior to the expiration date. For more information on the stock buyback plan, refer to Note 11 – Stockholders’ Equity in Item 8 of this Annual Report on Form 10-KCommon stock repurchase activity under stock buyback plan during the fourth quarter of 2018 was as follows:




















Total Number of Shares of Units Purchased


Average Price Paid Per Share


Total Number of Shares Purchased as a Part of Publicly Announced Plans or Programs


Maximum Number of Shares That May Yet Be Purchased Under Plans or Programs

Oct 1, 2018 - Oct 31, 2018










Nov 1, 2018 - Nov 30, 2018










Dec 1, 2018 - Dec 31, 2018

























The following tables set forth certain selected historical consolidated financial data and should be read in conjunction with Item 7. “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the Consolidated Financial Statements and Notes thereto included in Item 8. “Financial Statements and Supplementary Data.”  An overview of non-GAAP measures and the reasons why management believes they are useful is included in Item 7. Reconciliations of non-GAAP measures appear later in this Item.
































Years Ended December 31,   

(in thousands, except per share data)











Income Statement:
















Interest income (a)
















Interest income (te) (b)
















Interest expense
















Net interest income (te)
















Provision for loan losses
















Noninterest income
















Noninterest expense
















Income before income taxes
















Income tax expense
















Net income































Earnings excluding nonoperating items
















Net income
















Nonoperating income
















Nonoperating expense
















Income tax benefit
















Income tax resulting from re-measurement of deferred tax asset (c)
















Nonoperating items, net of applicable income tax benefit
















Operating earnings

















Interest income includes the net impact of discount accretion and premium amortization arising from business combinations totaling $23.1 million, $28.3 million, $19.3 million, $35.1 million and $92.5 million for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014, respectively.


For analytical purposes, management adjusts interest income and net interest income to a taxable equivalent basis using a 21% rate for the year ended December 31, 2018 and a 35% rate for all other periods presented.  


Income tax expense resulting from re-measurement of the net deferred tax asset following the enactment of the Tax Act.



































At and For the Years Ended December 31,   

(in thousands)  











Period-End Balance Sheet Data:
















Total loans, net of unearned income (a)
















Loans held for sale
































Short-term investments
















Total earning assets
















Allowance for loan losses
















Goodwill and other intangible assets
















Other assets
















Total assets
















Noninterest-bearing deposits
















Interest-bearing transaction and savings deposits
















Interest-bearing public fund deposits
















Time deposits
















Total interest-bearing deposits
















Total deposits
















Short-term borrowings
















Long-term debt
















Other liabilities
















Stockholders' equity
















Total liabilities & stockholders' equity
















Average Balance Sheet Data:
















Total loans, net of unearned income (a)
















Loans held for sale
















Securities (b)
















Short-term investments
















Total earning assets
















Allowance for loan losses
















Goodwill and other intangible assets
















Other assets
















Total  assets
















Noninterest-bearing deposits
















Interest-bearing transaction and savings deposits
















Interest-bearing public fund deposits
















Time deposits
















Total  interest-bearing deposits
















Total deposits
















Short-term borrowings
















Long-term debt
















Other liabilities
















Stockholders' equity
















Total liabilities & stockholders' equity

















Includes nonaccrual loans.


Average securities does not include unrealized holding gains/losses on available for sale securities.



































Years Ended December 31,   

($ in thousands)  











Performance Ratios:
















Return on average assets
















Return on average common equity
















Return on average tangible common equity
















Earning asset yield (te)
















Total cost of funds
















Net interest margin (te)
















Noninterest income to total revenue (te)
















Efficiency ratio (a)
















Average loan/deposit ratio
















FTE employees (period-end)
















Capital Ratios:
















Common stockholders' equity to total assets
















Tangible common equity ratio (b)