HONESDALE, Pa., Jan. 25, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Lewis J. Critelli, President and Chief Executive Officer of Norwood Financial Corp (Nasdaq:NWFL) and its subsidiary Wayne Bank announced earnings today for the three months ended December 31, 2012 of $1,759,000. This represents a decrease of $238,000 from the $1,997,000 earned in the comparable period of 2011 due primarily to increased loan loss provisions. Earnings per share (fully diluted) were $.53 and $.61 for the three-month periods, respectively. Net interest income before the provision for loan losses declined $147,000 over the same period of last year, while other income increased $88,000. The provision for loan losses was $800,000 in the current three-month period compared to $500,000 in the same period of last year, while operating expenses increased $64,000. Annualized return on average assets for the current quarter was 1.02% with an annualized return on equity of 7.54%. For the year ended December 31, 2012 net income totaled a record level of $8,403,000, an increase of $1,047,000 over the $7,356,000 earned in the prior year as an increase in net interest income and securities gains offset higher loan loss provisions and increased operating expenses. Earnings per share on a fully diluted basis were $2.56 for 2012, compared to $2.39 in 2011. The return on average assets for the year was 1.23% with a return on average equity of 9.22% compared to 1.18% and 9.26%, respectively, in 2011. Total assets were $672.3 million as of December 31, 2012. Loans receivable totaled $476.7 million as of December 31, 2012, with total deposits of $524.4 million and stockholders' equity of $92.4 million. The Company's capital position remains "well capitalized" in accordance with risk-based capital guidelines established by bank regulators. Loans receivable grew $18.8 million from the prior year-end due primarily to growth in commercial real estate loans, notwithstanding the sale of $7.0 million of fixed rate residential mortgages for purposes of interest rate risk management. Excluding these sales, residential mortgage loans would have increased $10.6 million. Total commercial loans grew $15.0 million in 2012, while total installment loans increased $200,000. As of December 31, 2012, total non-performing loans were $13.2 million and represented 2.77% of total loans compared to $7.8 million, or 1.71% as of December 31, 2011. The increase was due primarily to one credit secured by commercial real estate that was transferred to nonaccrual status during the year. For the three months and year ended December 31, 2012, net charge-offs totaled $639,000 and $2,406,000, respectively, compared to $387,000 and $1,733,000, respectively, for the corresponding periods in 2011. The increase in charge-offs in 2012 is due primarily to one credit which has been transferred to non-accrual status based on the borrower's inability to make scheduled payments. Based on the increase in charge-offs and non-performing loans, the Company determined that it would be appropriate to provide $800,000 and $2,450,000 for potential future losses for the three and twelve month periods, respectively, compared to $500,000 in the similar quarter of last year and $1,575,000 for the year of 2011. As of December 31, 2012, the allowance for loan losses totaled $5,502,000 and 1.15% of total loans compared to $5,458,000 and 1.19% of total loans at December 31, 2011.