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Roma Financial Corporation Announces Operating Results For 2012

ROBBINSVILLE, N.J., Feb. 27, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Roma Financial Corporation (Nasdaq:ROMA) (the "Company"), the holding company of Roma Bank and RomAsia Bank, announced today its financial condition and results of operations for the three months and year ended December 31, 2012.

At December 31, 2012, the Company's consolidated assets were $1.81 billion, compared to $1.89 billion at December 31, 2011, and $1.85 billion at September 30, 2012. Deposits of $1.5 billion reflected decreases of 5.8% and 0.05%, compared to those at December 31, 2011 and September 30, 2012, respectively. Stock repurchases during the year, lowered stockholders' equity to $215.6 million at year end, compared to $218.0 million at December 31, 2011.

"A fifty percent increase in our provision for loan losses; further compression in net interest income; costs of maintaining reacquired properties; compliance with the regulatory agreement; and merger related expenses were the significant drivers of our low earnings this year.  Non-performing assets (non-performing loans and properties acquired in foreclosures) continued their increase this year.  While the ratio of non-performing loans to total loans declined 25 basis points to 4.34%, the lowest level since the acquisition of Sterling Banks in 2010, the ratio of non-performing assets to total assets increased 51 basis points to 3.07%",  commented Peter A. Inverso, President and CEO.  

"We continued to carefully and incrementally reduce our balance sheet and the excess liquidity in it and improve our interest rate risk by lowering rates on our certificate deposit products. Interest margins tightened further as longer term investment options remained unattractive and our loan portfolio yields contracted from refinancing and rate competition in the commercial markets. Despite sub-par results, our balance sheet remains very strong and we remain well capitalized by current regulatory standards", added Inverso.

The Company's consolidated net income for the year ended December 31, 2012, was $0.6 million, compared to $7.0 million in the prior year.  The fourth quarter of this year was largely impacted by nearly $2.0 million of merger expenses. Despite a modest reduction in the annual average net interest spread, net interest income declined in 2012 by 3.7%, or approximately $2.0 million.  Net income on a per share basis was $0.02 per diluted share, compared to $0.23 per diluted share last year.

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