The disclaimer regarding forward-looking statements details the number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from forward-looking statements made therein. And although we may elect to update forward-looking statements from time to time, we specifically disclaim any obligation to do so, even if our estimates change, unless required by applicable securities laws. We also present a commentary with regard to the difference between operating earnings and net income reported in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States. PSEG believes that the non-GAAP financial measure of operating earnings provides a consistent and comparable measure of performance of metrics to help shareholders understand the trends in our performance.
I am now going to turn the call over to Ralph Izzo, Chairman, President and CEO of Public Service Enterprise Group. Joining Ralph on the call is Caroline Dorsa, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. At the conclusion of their remarks, there will be time for their questions, and we do ask that you limit yourself to one question and one follow-up. Thanks.
Thank you, Kathleen and thanks everyone for joining us today on this call. Earlier this morning we reported operating earnings for the fourth quarter and full year 2011. Our operating earnings of $0.47 per share in the fourth quarter brought operating earnings for the full year to $2.74 per share at the upper end of our guidance for the year of $2.50 to $2.75 per share and consistent with what we shared with you on our last quarterly call.Despite challenging conditions, the past year was one of significant accomplishment as we made progress in our investments designed to continually improve New Jersey's energy infrastructure. We received approval to extend and renew the Nuclear Regulatory Commission operating licenses for our Hope Creek and Salem stations. Performance at our new nuclear facilities remained strong. Hope Creek exceeded its best annual generation in 2011 by operating at a 98.7% capacity factor.