Institutions aren't thrilled by the ability of vendors to produce customized online personal financial management tools, and are becoming masters of the workaround to build distinctive apps. "Your Web site should reflect the personality of the organization, and if you go with these cookie-cutter things you really sort of hand that over to somebody else," says Stu Fisher, svp of e-commerce for Addison Avenue Federal Credit Union. "I don't think people should do that with their branches - just stamp them out so that they all look the same and they are undifferentiated - but somehow when it comes to the Web we tend to do that."

Addison Avenue is prepping a September rollout of a financial management product based on technology from two vendors; it is adapting software from Jwaala to develop the basic tools to help its members monitor deposits and track spending, and is adding community features developed by Wesabe.

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