The bank reported a 38.3 percent increase in net income to $438.1 million in 2012 versus $316.9 million in 2011. For the final quarter of 2012, the bank saw a net income of $69.7 million.
"As we close 2012, we reflect on the many milestones the Bank has achieved this year, beginning with our conversion to a national charter last January," said Jorge Moran, Sovereign Bank president and CEO.
"This change enabled the bank to expand its retail and commercial capabilities to better meet the needs of clients. The new charter has enabled Sovereign to expand its wholesale banking transactions. We continued investing strongly in the franchise and showed double-digit growth in profits. We also grew our staff, with 340 new team members, making approximately 8,900 Sovereign-Santander employees across the footprint."
Additionally, the bank's lending to commercial and industrial businesses grew by 23 percent during 2012 compared to 2011, significantly higher than the industry, where growth was 13 percent.
The bank also had a strong year in loan production in the areas of residential mortgages, small business lending and corporate banking. Total loan production for 2012 was $20.5 billion, a 28.3 percent increase over loan production during 2011. Outstanding total loan balances grew 3.1 percent during 2012 to $53.2 billion.
Residential mortgage production was also up 37 percent in 2012 when compared to 2011.
According to the bank, its commitment to invest in small businesses is a key component of a strategy to support growth within our communities and generate economic activity and employment.