Banks Have Another Strong Qtr.

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The U.S. banking industry continues to report strong operating results.

During the third quarter of 2004, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) reported that the larger, federally chartered banks showed an annualized return on equity of 15.00% during the third quarter, down slightly from the 16.84% reported for the same period one year earlier. Third-quarter profits were 16.82%.

CUNA's Senior VP-Governmental Affairs, John McKechnie, released a statement saying, "Quarter after quarter the banking industry posts impressive and often record-setting financial performance. Given that, it is not so nearly as clear how credit unions present, in any way, a viable competitive threat to the banks."

Smaller banks also performed well, with the return on equity at the smaller, state-chartered banks at 12.95% during the third quarter, compared with 13.09% a year earlier.

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