Monarch Financial Holdings Earns Sandler O'Neill's Sm-All Star Award for Financial Performance

CHESAPEAKE, Va., Sept. 28, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Monarch Financial Holdings, Inc., parent of Monarch Bank, (NASDAQ:MNRK) announced it has been named one of the top performing banks in the nation by investment banking firm Sandler O’Neill.  This was the fourth time Monarch has been recognized with this award since 2007, and places Monarch in the top 8% of banks nationwide in terms of performance.  Sandler notes the Sm-All Star approach is a starting point to identifying high quality companies before they are discovered by Wall Street.

“We are once again honored to be named one of the top performing banks in the country.  As noted by Sandler O’Neill, this year’s winners had higher hurdles to be recognized, as banks across the country have improved their overall performance.  While four Virginia banks made the cut, we were the only bank recognized that serves the Hampton Roads and Outer Banks markets,” stated Brad E. Schwartz, Chief Executive Officer. “Through this continued high performance we are able to deliver exceptional service, the newest technologies, and valuable financial solutions to our clients as well as hire the best bankers, reward our shareholders, and give back to our communities.”

In its “Class of 2015 Bank and Thrift Sm-All Stars” report, Sandler O’Neill recognized the 34 top performing small-capitalization institutions among a field of 435 publicly traded banks and thrifts in the U.S. with stock market values of less than $2.5 billion.  The largest bank to be recognized was $17.8 billion in total assets and the smallest was $493 million in total assets. 

Inclusion as a Sm-All Star was based on Monarch’s performance on seven financial performance measurements.  To assess fundamental momentum in the evaluation, growth trends in (1) earnings per share, (2) loans, and (3) deposits were evaluated. As a measure of profitability, (4) return on average equity was included.  In terms of asset quality, (5) nonperforming assets to loans plus other real estate, and (6) net loan charge-offs.  Finally, (7) tangible common equity capital to total assets was used as an indicator of capital strength.  Overall the banks recognized delivered better bottom line results that are markedly better than the industry as a whole. 

Sandler O’Neill & Partners is a New York-based investment banking and advisory firm that specializes in financial institutions.

Monarch Financial Holdings, Inc. is the one-bank holding company for Monarch Bank.  Monarch Bank is a community bank with ten banking offices in Chesapeake, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, and Williamsburg, Virginia.  Monarch Bank also has loan production offices in Newport News and Richmond, Virginia.  OBX Bank, a division of Monarch Bank, operates offices in Kitty Hawk and Nags Head, North Carolina.  Monarch Mortgage and our affiliated mortgage companies have over thirty-five offices with locations in Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, and South Carolina.  Our subsidiaries/divisions include Monarch Bank, OBX Bank, Monarch Mortgage (secondary mortgage origination), OBX Bank Mortgage (secondary mortgage origination), Coastal Home Mortgage, LLC (secondary mortgage origination), Fitzgerald Financial, LLC (secondary mortgage origination), Advance Mortgage (secondary mortgage origination), Monarch Bank Private Wealth (investment, trust, planning and private banking), Monarch Investments (investment and insurance solutions), Real Estate Security Agency, LLC (title agency) and Monarch Capital, LLC (commercial mortgage brokerage).  The shares of common stock of Monarch Financial Holdings, Inc. are publicly traded on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol “MNRK”. 

This press release may contain “forward-looking statements,” within the meaning of federal securities laws that involve significant risks and uncertainties. Statements herein are based on certain assumptions and analyses by the Company and are factors it believes are appropriate in the circumstances. Actual results could differ materially from those contained in or implied by such statements for a variety of reasons including, but not limited to: changes in interest rates; changes in accounting principles, policies, or guidelines; significant changes in the economic scenario: significant changes in regulatory requirements; and significant changes in securities markets.  Consequently, all forward-looking statements made herein are qualified by these cautionary statements and the cautionary language in the Company’s most recent Form 10-K and 10-Q reports and other documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company does not undertake to update forward-looking statements to reflect circumstances or events that occur after the date the forward-looking statements are made.

CONTACT: Contact:  Brad E. Schwartz – (757) 389-5111,

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