Noninterest expense was $84.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2011, up slightly from noninterest expense of $84.0 million in the third quarter of 2011, and down from $88.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2010. There were no significant noninterest expense items in the fourth quarter of 2011. Noninterest expense in the third quarter of 2011 included a donation of $2.0 million to the Bank of Hawaii Foundation. Noninterest expense in the fourth quarter of 2010 included $1.9 million for employee incentives, $1.2 million for a refresh of personal computers, and a donation of $1.0 million to the Bank of Hawaii Foundation. In the fourth quarter of 2010 these items were partially offset by a $1.3 million gain on the sale of foreclosed real estate and a $1.0 million settlement gain on the extinguishment of retiree life insurance obligations. Noninterest expense for the full year of 2011 was $348.2 million, up slightly from noninterest expense of $346.2 million in 2010. Results for 2011 included a second quarter litigation settlement of $9.0 million.
The efficiency ratio for the fourth quarter of 2011 was 60.42 percent compared with 56.87 percent in the previous quarter and 60.05 percent in the same quarter last year. The efficiency ratio for the full year of 2011 was 59.23 percent compared with 52.32 percent during the full year of 2010.
The effective tax rate for the fourth quarter of 2011 was 26.1 percent compared with 29.6 percent in the previous quarter and 24.5 percent in the same quarter last year. The effective tax rate for the full year of 2011 was 29.5 percent compared with 29.3 percent for the full year of 2010. The effective tax rate for the fourth quarters of 2011 and 2010 were favorably impacted by the release of tax reserves determined during the quarter.
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