And now, I would like to turn the call over to Valley's Chairman, President and CEO, Gerald Lipkin.

Gerald Lipkin

Thank you, Dianne. Good morning and welcome to our fourth quarter earnings conference call. Valley’s fourth quarter net income of $24.8 million or $0.15 per diluted share was negatively impacted by both non cash impairment charges on investment securities and transactional merger expenses associated with the State Bank acquisition. In the aggregate, those two items negatively impacted our diluted earnings per share by $0.08. For the year, Valley earned a $133.7 million and had solid earnings for each quarter of 2011. Valley in its 84 year history has never reported a losing quarter.

The following comments surrounding loan growth and activity for the full year and quarter do not include the impact of the $37 million short term loan to State Bank Corp. The loan was used to repay their tarp funds and was eliminated at closing on January 1 upon the acquisition of the company.

Total loan growth during both the quarter and full year was extremely promising as Valley originated over $685 million of new loans during the quarter and over $2.4 billion of new loans during the 12 months of 2011. This marks the highest annual volume of new originations ever recorded at the bank. As a result, net new non covered loans at Valley for the year grew by approximately 5.3%. For the quarter, the growth was approximately 7.4% annualized.

New commercial lending originations for the quarter equal $290 million, bringing the full year total to $1.1 billion. Net non covered loan growth for the year in the commercial C&I and CRE portfolios was nearly $200 million despite the enormous amount of prepayments received which partially mitigated the new volume. With the exception of construction loan portfolio, we are experiencing growth in all types of commercial lending.

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