Moore Financial Group, parent company of Salt Lake-based Continental Bank and Trust Co., said earnings rose 66 percent to $6 million, or $.77 per share in the 2nd quarter, compared with $3.6 million, or $.49 per share for the same period last year.

Earnings for the first six months increased 56 percent to $11.2 million, or $1.44 per share, compared with $7.2 million, or $.99 per share for the same period last year.The bank holding company has $3.5 billion in assets. Other subsidiaries and companies include Idaho First National Bank, Oregon First Bank, Moore Financial Services and Moore Financial Trust Co.

Daniel R. Nelson, chairman and chief executive officer of the Boise-based company, said success in improving loan quality was confirmed by a 59.9 percent decrease in write offs for bad loans compared to 2nd quarter 1987.

"Net charge-offs for the six months ended June 30, 1988 were $5.5 million, a 51.8 percent decrease from the same period a year ago," Nelson said.

Non-performing assets decreased from $69.7 million to $49.5 million, a 29 percent improvement from the period ending June 30, 1987, Nelson said. The provision for credit losses declined 42.9 percent from 2nd quarter 1987.

Also contributing to the improved performance was an increase of 9.5 percent in total loans reflecting the company's participation in the improving economies of Idaho, Utah and Oregon.

"Historically strong capital ratios and excellent liquidity, in addition to earnings improvement, further strengthened Moore Financial Group's financial position during the second quarter," Nelson said.