JASPER, Ind., July 29, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- German American Bancorp, Inc. (Nasdaq:GABC) today reported exceptionally strong performance during the second quarter, resulting in the achievement of record quarterly and year-to-date earnings. German American's second quarter 2013 net income of $6.5 million, or $0.52 per share, represented an increase of approximately 11%, on a per share basis, above the net income of $6.0 million, or $0.47 per share, reported in the second quarter of 2012. On a year-to-date basis, 2013 net income was $12.3 million, or $0.97 per share, which was approximately a 5% improvement, on a per share basis, over the $11.6 million, or $0.92 per share, reported for the first six months of 2012. As compared to the same quarter prior year results, this quarter's earnings were positively affected by a $1.3 million, or approximately 25%, increase in total non-interest income, driven primarily by approximately a $550,000 increase in other operating income, largely related to interest rate swap transactions, a $150,000 improvement in trust and investment product fees, a nearly $130,000 increase in net gains from the sale of residential mortgage loans, and an approximately $400,000 increase in net gains on the sales of securities. Further enhancing the Company's second quarter 2013 earnings was a $590,000 reduction in the amount of provision for loan loss booked during the prior year's second quarter, resulting from a $200,000 negative provision during the current quarter as compared to a $390,000 expense during the second quarter of 2012. This significant reduction in the level of loan loss provision was related to a continued improvement in the Company's asset quality metrics, as the Company's historically strong level of asset quality showed further improvement during the quarter. The Company's net interest income during the current quarter also increased by nearly $500,000 from the level earned during the first quarter of this year. Net interest income during the second quarter and year to date period in 2013, was similar to that recorded in the comparable periods last year. The improvement in net interest income on a linked quarter basis and the stabilized level of net interest income during the current year as compared to the prior year was attributable to the Company's ability to grow its outstanding loans during the past year and the redemption by the Company of its 8% subordinated debentures effective April 1, 2013. End of period loans increased by approximately $50 million, or 16%, on an annualized basis during the current quarter relative to that of end of the first quarter of the year, and by approximately $100 million, or 9%, compared to last year's total loans at June 30 th. The Company's total non-interest expenses increased by approximately $840,000, or 7%, during the second quarter compared to the same quarter of last year. The increase in total non-interest expense during the second quarter of this year was largely attributable to an approximately $800,000 increase in salaries and benefits expense related to increased staffing levels due in part to an increased number of banking locations, increased costs related to the Company's health insurance plan, and costs associated with the pending termination of a frozen defined benefit pension plan.