"More importantly, we see 2012 as a watershed year in preparing our company for even greater success. The Asset Strategies, undertaken in the second quarter of 2012, substantially improved the credit quality of our assets and is shown in significantly improved credit statistics which compare favorably to industry peers. This improvement in credit is important not only in its implications for lower credit costs, but also in freeing more of our resources to focus on winning new, high quality, business. The benefits are already apparent in our fourth quarter results and balance sheet growth. Additionally, we expect the prepayment of FHLB advances and the MBS deleverage we began late in the fourth quarter will yield notable improvement in this coming year's net income, EPS and returns metrics, while further stabilizing our margin and strengthening our capital position.
"Our improvements are driven by continued success in building our business model of 'Engaged Associates delivering Stellar Service growing Customer Advocates and value for our Owners'. WSFS again was rated a Top Workplace in Delaware and Customer engagement scores reached an all-time high, ranking WSFS in the 95th percentile of Gallup's broad database of companies. Additionally, we were voted "Top Bank" in Delaware by the readers of The News Journal and DelawareOnline.com in their annual Readers' Choice Awards. This Associate engagement and Customer advocacy has been critical to our success in market share growth, and positions us well to continue to grow in 2013.
"We look forward to the opportunities we see in 2013 and our next steps in becoming a sustainably high performing company."
Fourth Quarter 2012 Discussion of Financial ResultsNet interest income increased from loan growth and continued rate management Net interest income for the fourth quarter of 2012 was $31.5 million, an increase of $605,000 from the third quarter of 2012. The net interest margin for the fourth quarter of 2012 was 3.39%, or a two basis point decrease from 3.41% reported for the third quarter of 2012. Compared to the fourth quarter of 2011, net interest income decreased $918,000 and the net interest margin decreased 22 basis points.