The Bank of South Carolina has opened 2012 by nearly cracking the $1 million profit mark.

The Charleston-based lender said it earned $998,805, or 22 cents a share, for the January-March period, a 12 percent gain compared to the first three months of 2012.

“We are quite pleased with our first quarter earnings report,” said Fleetwood S. Hassell, president and CEO. “The ongoing contribution of our mortgage operation, coupled with excellent control of our non-interest expenses, continues to drive our numbers. Bank lending remains flat, yet our new account activity and deposit growth is strong. We are off to a good start for 2013.”

The Bank of South Carolina has four offices in downtown Charleston, Mount Pleasant, Summerville and West Ashley.

Shares of the lender’s parent company were up 14 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $12.26 in afternoon trading.

Contact John McDermott at 937-5572.