New Hampshire Business Newsreel
Borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure should avoid scammers offering help — for a fee — to file a claim under the National Mortgage Settlement. Help is available for free, the state’s attorney general says.
In March, Attorney General Michael A. Delaney announced a settlement in which the nation’s five largest mortgage servicers — Bank of America, Citi, Ally/GMAC, JPMorganChase and Wells Fargo — agreed to resolve claims brought on behalf of consumers by attorneys general in 49 states, including New Hampshire. The $25 billion settlement includes an estimated $4.5 million in direct payments to New Hampshire borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure between Jan. 1, 2008, and Dec. 31, 2011, while their loans were being serviced by one of those five banks.
Last month, the national settlement administrator began mailing approximately 7,600 claim forms to New Hampshire borrowers who are eligible to file claims. The forms are simple to complete and any borrowers who have questions or need help filing their claim can contact the settlement administrator, toll free, at 1-866-430-8358, or call the Attorney General’s Mortgage Hotline at 1-866-522-4450. The deadline for filing a claim is Jan. 18.
New Hampshire Thrift Bancshares, Inc. Announces Earnings for Third Quarter
NEWPORT, NH — (Marketwire) — 10/15/12 — New Hampshire Thrift Bancshares, Inc. (the “Company”) (NASDAQ: NHTB), the holding company for Lake Sunapee Bank, fsb (the “Bank”), today reported consolidated net income for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, of $6.1 million, or $0.94 per diluted common share, compared to $6.0 million, or $0.96 per diluted common share for same period in 2011, an increase of $86 thousand, or 1.42%. For the quarter ended September 30, 2012, the Company reported consolidated net income of $2.0 million, or $0.32 per diluted common share compared to $2.0 million, or $0.31 per diluted common share, for the quarter ended September 30, 2011, an increase of $17 thousand, or 0.84%.
Total assets increased $76.5 million, or 7.34%, to $1.1 billion at September 30, 2012, from $1.0 billion at December 31, 2011.
Net loans increased $95.3 million, or 13.34%, to $810.3 million at September 30, 2012, from $715.0 million at December 31, 2011.
The Company originated $323.3 million in loans for the nine months ended September 30, 2012, compared to $195.8 million for the same period in 2011.
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‘Ex-Im’ Bank helping businesses access foreign markets
How important are exports to the U.S. economy in the midst of a slow recovery? They are vital, according to recent Commerce Department figures which show that 60 percent of growth in the nation’s Gross Domestic Product is due to increased exports.
Fred Hochberg, the chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, was in New Hampshire for two days last week to emphasize the importance of exports and the effort the Ex-Im Bank is making in New Hampshire to help businesses expand into overseas markets. One of those stops was at the Westinghouse plant in Newington, which will make parts for a recently announced $2 billion project — with a direct loan authorized by the Ex-Im Bank — to build the first nuclear power plant in a Persian Gulf nation, the United Arab Emirates. The project is expected to support or create 5,000 jobs in 17 states.
Hochberg said there has been consistent growth in the U.S. export sector over the past three years since he was tapped to head the independent agency by President Barack Obama
“Last year, we topped $2.1 trillion (in exports), an all-time record. Increasingly, our ability to lead in technology and innovation is leading to more manufacturing job growth and our ability to maintain manufacturing prowess,” said Hochberg, a former business executive and business school dean who also served as acting administrator of the Small Business Administration in the Clinton administration. He said in 2010 Obama called for a doubling of exports within five years and he has taken part in more than 40 Global Access Forums across the country in the past two years. One of the first was held in New Hampshire in January 2011.
“We decided we weren’t going to do business the way it was done before,” Hochberg said of the outreach efforts to the small business community. “This spotlight is important because I don’t want anybody to lose a potential export sale because they can’t secure the right financing.”
Shedding Light on Unconventional Funding Paths
Aspiring entrepreneurs often hope to convince wealthy individuals to buy stakes in their nascent ventures. With angel investors putting $9.2 billion in U.S. companies during the first half of 2012—up 3.1 percent over the same time period last year, according to a study (PDF) by The Center for Venture Research at the University of New Hampshire—who can blame them?
Trouble is, the report shows that half of angel money goes to just three categories: medical devices, software, and biotechnology. To glean would-be entrepreneurs’ ideas about other fundraising sources, I spoke to the founders of three startups. One got a loan from a micro-lender. Businesses such as Microsoft (MSFT) chipped in technology and services for the second. The last founder did manage to get rich folks to bet on her by joining a network that supports women who run promising growth businesses.
The “Octocopter” Guy
Last year, when Josh Lambeth tried to get banks and angels to back his plan to start Arizona’s first aerial-photography company, which would use a small, remote-controlled “octocopter,” he struck out. So the 25-year-old Phoenix man, whose day job is shooting school photos, turned to a micro-lending group that is part of Accion U.S. Network, a national nonprofit. A credit supervisor at the group, Metta Smith, says it makes loans up to $300,000 and the average loan size is $10,000. She notes that its entrepreneurs typically cannot get traditional bank loans: About 60 percent are low- and moderate-income borrowers and 40 percent are female.