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Press release from Marketwire

EQI Reports Third Quarter 2011 Results

New records for nine-month revenue, net earnings and earnings per share Mortgage originations in quarter of $34.5 million; total quarter-end assets over $100 million

Thursday, November 10, 2011

EQI Reports Third Quarter 2011 Results17:34 EST Thursday, November 10, 2011TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 10, 2011) - Equity Financial Holdings Inc. (TSX:EQI) ("EQI" or "the Corporation"), a Canadian financial services company serving the corporate and institutional markets, and the retail mortgage market, reported today its financial results for the three months ended September 30, 2011.Financial Highlights (all dollar amounts, except per-share, are in $000s unless otherwise stated)(1)Three months ended Sep. 30Nine months ended Sep. 302011201020112010UnauditedUnauditedUnauditedUnauditedRevenue$5,529$6,705$30,321$18,113Revenue growth(18%)4%67%17%EBITDA$300$2,572$12,933$4,460Net income and comprehensive income$60$1,634$8,640$2,675Net income & comprehensive income growth(96%)0%223%28%Earnings per share, basic$0.01$0.24$1.01$0.39Earnings per share, diluted$0.01$0.24$1.00$0.39Diluted earnings per share growth(96%)(4%)156%22%Return on equity (annualized)0%26%30%15%Cash and cash equivalents at period end$35,536$14,392$35,536$14,392At the end of the third quarter of 2011, our revenue, net earnings and earnings per share for the year to date are the highest in our history. We have also achieved another milestone as our assets have grown to over $100 million for the first time, reflecting the changing nature of our balance sheet as a result of entering the business of mortgage lending and deposit-taking.Our third quarter revenues are significantly lower than in the prior year primarily due to the absence of large-volume foreign exchange transactions. The second quarter of this year had generated our highest quarterly contribution to date from such transactions; however, we emphasized at that time the impossibility of forecasting the incidence of such transactions for the remainder of 2011. Our transfer and trust segment continued to perform well during the third quarter, with steady transfer agent revenues and a 43% increase in corporate trust revenues. We also continued to make investments in our mortgage lending and foreign exchange operations, as well as our sales and marketing activities, building toward a robust and scalable infrastructure to support continued growth in our various business lines. Along with the decline in overall revenue, the costs of this additional infrastructure led to subdued third quarter net earnings. As at September 30, 2011, on the strength of third quarter originations of $34.5 million we have outstanding mortgage loans of over $53 million and we have estimated commitments to make future advances on mortgage loans of $15.7 million. We believe this pace is on track to meet our previously disclosed target of $100 million in outstanding loans within the first twelve months of operations. At this early stage, however, these operations are only generating a small portion of our revenue, while representing an increase in costs. As with our other operations, the investment in our mortgage operations provides an infrastructure that should allow us to manage significant additional volumes with correspondingly lower increases in costs, translating rapidly into increased net income.Highlights of our results for the third quarter are as follows: Revenue decreased by $1,176, or 18%, to $5,529 for the third quarter, reflecting the absence of large-volume foreign exchange transactions that occurred in the third quarter of 2010, the occurrence of which is inherently unpredictable. Revenue increased by $12,208, or 67%, to $30,321 for the year to date. The increase for the year is predominantly attributable to large-volume trust and foreign exchange transactions that occurred in the second quarter. Net earnings decreased by $1,573 or 96% to $60 for the third quarter. The sharp decline resulted from the decrease in revenue along with a 27% increase in our operating expenses as explained further below.Net earnings for the year to date increased by $5,965 or 223%, to $8,640. Our operating expenses for the year to date have increased by 27%, flowing from our continued investments in our mortgage lending and foreign exchange operations, as well as our sales and marketing activities. These expenses are in line with our expectations and consistent with our past messages that we are assembling a robust and scalable infrastructure to support continued growth in our various business lines, including the building of a much larger balance sheet. For the year to date, these increased operating expenses are proportionately much less than the increase in our revenue, demonstrating how large-volume transactions allow us to leverage our existing infrastructure. Basic earnings per share for the third quarter correspondingly decreased by $0.23 or 96%, from $0.24 to $0.01; for the year to date, they increased by $0.62 or 159 %, from $0.39 to $1.01. Diluted earnings per share for the third quarter correspondingly decreased by $0.23 or 96%, from $0.24 to $0.01; for the year to date, they increased by $0.61 or 156%, from $0.39 to $1.00. Earnings before income taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) decreased by $2,272 or 88%, to $300 for the third quarter; it increased by $8,473 or 190%, to $12,933 for the year to date. Annualized return on Equity decreased to 0% from 26% for the third quarter; it increased to 30% from 15% for the year to date. EQI President & CEO Paul G. Smith said, "Our revenue, net earnings and earnings per share for the year to date are the highest in our history, already exceeding our results for all of fiscal 2010. These results were due in large part to significant revenues from large-volume transactions, evidencing our success in accessing the opportunities that exist in this area, but they also reflect strong performance across all of our established lines of business. However, as this quarter's results demonstrate, the inherent unpredictability of large-volume transaction revenues will inevitably lead to fluctuations in our net earnings and earnings per share. As our mortgage portfolio grows, the impact of large one-off transactions on our operating results can be expected to gradually decline over time.At the end of the third quarter we have over $100 million in assets on our balance sheet for the first time, reflecting the changing nature of our balance sheet as a result of our entry into the business of mortgage lending and deposit-taking. To date, the initial activity of this new business has been in line with our plan, expanding at a pace consistent with our target of achieving $100 million in loans outstanding by the end of our first twelve months of operations. During the third quarter, we have continued to invest in building a robust and scalable infrastructure to support a much larger balance sheet as this business grows beyond the first year." Our Interim Consolidated Financial Statements and Management's Discussion and Analysis for the third quarter ended September 30, 2011 can be found in our filings on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and on the Corporation's website at www.equityfinancialholdings.com.Quarterly Conference Call EQI will hold a conference call on November 11, 2011 at 9AM Eastern Time to discuss its third quarter operating results and answer questions. Participants can dial (416-340-2216) or toll free (866-226-1792). About Equity Financial Holdings Inc. Through its wholly owned subsidiaries, EQI provides transfer agent, corporate trust, foreign exchange, retail mortgage and corporate secretarial services to the corporate and institutional markets, and the retail mortgage market. Learn more at www.equityfinancialholdings.com.(1) The following unaudited information was determined in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), except EBITDA (Earnings Before Income Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) and Return on Equity (annualized) (net income divided by the simple average of opening and closing shareholders' equity, multiplied by the appropriate factor to arrive at an annualized figure) which do not have any standardized meaning prescribed by IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other issuers. However, we believe financial analysts and investors view these as key measures of certain aspects of our performance. They use EBITDA as an indication of our ability to invest in property, plant and equipment, and to raise and service debt; and they use Return on Equity as a key indicator of whether we use our capital resources efficiently. These measures should not be considered as an alternative to cash flows from operating activities nor to any other measures of performance presented in accordance with IFRS. Advisory notes: Certain portions of this press release as well as other public statements by the Corporation contain "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation, which is also referred to as "forward-looking statements", which may not be based on historical fact. Wherever possible, words such as "will", "plans," "expects," "targets," "continue", "estimates," "scheduled," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "may," and similar expressions or statements that certain actions, events or results "may," "could," "would," "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved, have been used to identify forward-looking information. Such forward-looking statements include, without limitation, the Corporation's EBITDA and earnings expectations for the mortgage and deposit business, fee income, expense levels, general economic, political and market factors in North America and internationally, interest and foreign exchange rates, global equity and capital markets, business competition, technological change, changes in government regulations, unexpected judicial or regulatory proceedings, catastrophic events, and the Corporation's ability to complete strategic transactions and integrate acquisitions and other factors. All material assumptions used in making forward-looking statements are based on management's knowledge of current business conditions and expectations of future business conditions and trends, including their knowledge of the current credit, interest rate and liquidity conditions affecting the Corporation and the Canadian economy. Certain material factors or assumptions are applied by the Corporation in making forward-looking statements, including without limitation, factors and assumptions regarding its ability to fund its mortgage business, the value of mortgage originations, the competitive nature of the alternative mortgage market, the expected margin between the interest earned on its mortgage portfolio and the interest to be paid on its deposits, the relative continued health of real estate markets, acceptance of its products in the marketplace, as well as its operating cost structure and the current tax regime.Forward-looking statements reflect the Corporation's current views with respect to future events and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from results contemplated by the forward-looking statements. Readers should not place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements, as they reflect the Corporation's current views with respect to future events and are subject to risks and uncertainties and are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by the Corporation, are inherently subject to significant business, economic, regulatory, competitive, political and social uncertainties and contingencies. Many factors could cause the Corporation's actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements that may be expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including among others a significant downturn in capital markets or the economy as a whole, errors or omissions by the Corporation in providing services to its customers, significant changes in foreign currency exchange rates, extreme price and volume fluctuations in the stock markets, significant increases in the cost of complying with applicable regulatory requirements, civil unrest, economic recession, pandemics, war and acts of terrorism which may adversely impact the North American and global economic and financial markets, inability to raise funds through public or private financing in the event that the Corporation incurs operating losses or requires substantial capital investment in order to respond to unexpected competitive pressures, significant changes in interest rates, failure by Equity Financial Trust Company ("EFT") to meet ongoing regulatory requirements, the failure of borrowers or counterparties to honour their financial or contractual obligations to EFT, failure by the Corporation to generate or obtain sufficient cash or cash equivalents in a timely manner and at a reasonable price or to meet its commitments as they become due, failure by EFT to adequately monitor and/or adjust its mortgage portfolio management practices for changing circumstances, failure by the Corporation to attract and to retain the necessary employees to meet its needs, failure by EFT to adequately monitor the services provided by third party service providers or to establish alternative arrangements if required, failure by EFT to secure sufficient deposits from securities dealers or a sufficient level of mortgage origination from its mortgage broker network, a failure of the computer systems of the Corporation or one or more of its service providers or the risks detailed from time-to-time in the Corporation's quarterly filings, annual information forms, annual reports and annual filings with securities regulators. Forward-looking information will be updated as required pursuant to the requirements of applicable securities laws.FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: Paul G. SmithEquity Financial Holdings Inc.President & CEO(416) 361-0930 Ext 270www.equityfinancialholdings.comThe Toronto Stock Exchange has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release.