Eight years after nearly sinking under the weight of the commercial real estate crisis, BankBoston Corp. is forging full speed ahead into realty lending - but this time with more caution.

The company charged off $1.4 billion of bad real estate loans from 1989 to 1992, during the depth of the market's crisis. Since then, it has reduced its real estate exposure from 25% of its total loan portfolio to 9%.

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