Executive Summary

U.S. Bank tops the list of SBA Lenders in Los Angeles District with $70.6 million in loans through the third quarter, followed by the L.A. office of Davis-based California Statewide Certified Development Co., with $47.4 million.

Citizens Business Bank makes its first appearance on the list, at No. 16, with its acquisition of Western Security Bank in July 2002. Comerica Bank climbed 15 spots to No. 3 with its acquisition of last year's No. 3, Imperial Bank.

The top 25 SBA lenders have made $507 million in loans through the first three-quarters of 2002, compared with $531 million for all of 2001. Among the 25 largest SBA lenders, the average loan size was $466,760.

Included on the list are lenders making loans under the 7(a) program (the most common type of SBA loan), and the 504 program, which involves loans made in conjunction with non-profit certified development companies. The Los Angeles District of the Small Business Administration includes Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

Nicole Taylor

The Pacesetter

U.S. Bank

With $70.6 million in Small Business Administration loans written through the third quarter of 2002, ended June 30, San Diego-based U.S. Bank has already exceeded its total 2001 loan volume of more than $65.1 million. According to unofficial SBA estimates, U.S. Bank is set to hit $106 million in loans this year, exceeding last year's figures by more than 60 percent.

Robert R. Flores, the bank's senior vice president of SBA lending, attributed the gains to a combination of factors, including the dismal economic climate.

Volatility in the stock market and other investment options has moved investment into Southern California's relatively stable real estate market, he said. That shift has helped the SBA division, which does the bulk of its 7(a) program loans in commercial and industrial real estate.

Flores also said U.S. Bank had been trying to expand its non-real estate loans volume.

"The 7(a) loan program allows for use for working capital, inventory, equipment, etc. and U.S. Bank is becoming more involved in those other loan sections," he said.

Nicole Taylor

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