Despite rising credit costs, Roma Financial Corp.'s fourth-quarter earnings, $100,000 a year earlier, rose to $1.2 million.

For the year the Robbinsville, N.J., company's earnings rose 95.3%, to $5.1 million, it said Tuesday. It said the quarterly improvement was largely the result of a 40% increase in net interest income from a year earlier, to $46.1 million. The rise was attributed to a growing balance sheet, including the July purchase of Sterling Banks Inc. in Mount Laurel, N.J.

Roma did not disclose its fourth-quarter loan-loss provision but said its 2010 provision rose 110%.

Data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. shows that Roma's bank had a fourth-quarter provision of $2.9 million, up 135% year over year. Nonperforming assets were $40.4 million, or 2.22% of total assets, up 142%.

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