Florida loans hit Regions Financial

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Regions Financial Corp. saw earnings drop 79 percent from in the third quarter, compared to a year ago, reporting earnings of 11 cents per share. The Birmingham, Ala.-based bank said problem loans in Florida were a major drag on profits. Regions reported that 60 percent of the third quarter net charge-offs to its second mortgages came from Florida, which accounted for just 23 percent of its second mortgage portfolio. Of the $3.6 billion in second mortgages Regions had in Florida, 4.28 percent were noncurrent, causing a $37.8 million loss. Regions had $2 billion in first mortgages in Florida. In the third quarter, 1.48 percent mortgages were noncurrent, leading to a $7.2 million loss.