SANTA ROSA -- Exchange bank announced a net after tax profit for the third quarter of $3.2 million, 7 percent higher than during the same period last year.

Total assets increased $82 million --5 percent -- over the 12 months ended Sept. 30.  Strong deposit growth lead to the accumulation of those assets, according to Exchange Bank, and total assets now exceed $1.63 billion.

The net value of loans was lower compared to the same period in 2011 -- $1.01 billion, versus $1.04 billion. Investment securities have increased, with $388.8 million compared to $310.7 million last year.

The bank's provision for loan losses was $2.1 million as of Sept. 30, down from $3 million at the same point in 2011. That decline was possible due to continued improvements to asset quality, with a 35 percent reduction in nonperforming assets over the past 12 months.

Exchange Bank restored its shareholder dividend last quarter, the sole source of funding for the Frank P. Doyle and Polly O’Meara Trust and the Doyle Scholarship at Santa Rosa Junior College. The bank had 12 profitable quarters and a strengthening loan portfolio before the dividend was restored, but rules connected to a $45 million infusion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program prevented the restoration of the dividend.

The bank paid a quarterly cash dividend of 25 cents per share on common stock to shareholders on Sept. 21, 2012.