UPDATE 2-Associated Banc-Corp posts narrower-than-expected loss

* Q2 loss/shr $0.06 vs est loss/shr $0.16

* Sees provisioning at lower levels than charge-offs

* Says TARP repayment more likely in 2011
(Adds details from conference call)

July 22 (BestGrowthStock) – Associated Banc-Corp (ASBC.O: ) posted a
narrower-than-expected quarterly loss, as the lender set aside
less money to cover bad loans, and said its credit problems
would continue to ease.

“We believe we have seen the peak in non-performing assets
and they will continue on a downward trend going forward,”
Chief Executive Philip Flynn said on a post-earnings conference

The bank expects to provision for loan losses at a lower
level than charge-offs, he said.

In the second quarter, provision for loan losses fell 37
percent to $97.7 million.

However, net charge-offs rose 72 percent to $105 million
from a year ago and the bank said it expects charge-offs to
remain high as it works troubled loans off its books.

The Green Bay, Wisconsin-based company, which received $525
million in bailout funds, said repayment would more likely
occur in 2011.

Net loss applicable to common shareholders was $10.2
million, or 6 cents a share, compared with a loss of $24.7
million, or 19 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Analysts on average expected the company to post a loss of
16 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Associated, which has total assets of $23 billion, has been
trying to bring down its non-performing assets in its
commercial-lending and home-equity portfolios.

Shares of the Green Bay, Wisconsin-based company closed at
$12.57 Thursday on Nasdaq.

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(Reporting by Jochelle Mendonca in Bangalore; Editing by Vinu

UPDATE 2-Associated Banc-Corp posts narrower-than-expected loss