Muncie-based First Merchants Corp. (Nasdaq: FRME) is reporting full-year net income of $149 million in 2020, down from $165 million the previous year. Chief Executive Officer Mark Hardwick says the bank faced significant headwinds and challenges, largely due to the pandemic.

Hardwick says, despite the challenges, the bank was able to help more than 5,200 customers through the Paycheck Protection Program. 

“We grew loans by 9.2%, deposits by 15.5%, processed over 2,700 loan modifications and donated an additional $1 million to COVID relief efforts in our communities,” said Hardwick. “Executive management expects 2021 to be a year of increasing momentum as the vaccine helps reopen our lobbies and allows us to repopulate our offices while growing our customer base.”

First Merchants is also reporting fourth quarter net income of $45.1 million, down from $47.8 million during the same period in 2019.

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