A bank's ability to earn money affects its long-term survivability. A bank can retain its earnings, increasing its capital cushion, or put them to work addressing problematic loans, potentially making the bank more resilient in tough times. Obviously, banks that are losing money are less able to do those things.
Merchants State Bank scored 22 out of a possible 30 on Bankrate's earnings test, beating out the national average of 15.12.
Return on equity, calculated by dividing net income (essentially, profit) by total equity, is one important way to measure a bank's earnings. The most recent annualized quarterly return on equity for Merchants State Bank was 12.72 percent, above the national average of 8.10 percent.
The bank reported net income of $2.4 million on total equity of $19.3 million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2017. The bank had an annualized return on average assets, or ROA, of 1.52 percent, above the 1 percent deemed satisfactory in accordance with industry standards, and above the average for U.S. banks of 1.00 percent.