Fee income from foreign exchange services and letters of credit totaled $11.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2012, up 29 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011 and 16 percent higher than the third quarter of 2012. Full-year 2012 foreign exchange services and letters of credit fee income totaled $40.0 million, up 10 percent from 2011. The increases largely reflect increased client activity and the addition of new relationships.
Other income was $24.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2012, up 39 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011 but down 13 percent from the third quarter of 2012. The increase from the year-ago period was due largely to the First American acquisition, as well as growth of income from client swap transactions and higher distribution income from investments. The increase was partly offset by lower gains on transfers of covered loans to OREO. Other income for the full-year 2012 was $82.9 million, up 9 percent from 2011.
City National's fourth-quarter 2012 noninterest expense amounted to $222.0 million, up 12 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011 and 7 percent higher than the third quarter of 2012. The year-over-year increase was due largely to the Rochdale and First American acquisitions, as well as higher premises costs. Fourth-quarter 2012 results also included $4.7 million, or $0.05 per share, in legal and professional fees and expense related to the resolution of a legal claim. This was partly offset by lower OREO expense. Noninterest expense for the full-year 2012 amounted to $825.1 million, up 2 percent from 2011.CREDIT QUALITY The following credit quality information excludes loans subject to loss-sharing agreements involving City National's FDIC-assisted transactions: Net recoveries in the fourth quarter of 2012 totaled $2.0 million, or 0.06 percent of total loans and leases on an annualized basis. The company realized net charge-offs of $5.5 million, or 0.18 percent, in the fourth quarter of 2011 and $2.2 million, or 0.06 percent, in the third quarter of 2012. Net recoveries for the full-year 2012 were $7.1 million, or 0.05 percent of total loans and leases. This compares with net charge-offs of $5.4 million in 2011.