THE 1 TRILLION MAKE AT MIDYEAR FOR THE FIRST TIME. THE TOTAL WAS UP FROM JUST $227 BILLION FIVE YEARS EARLIER.

IN ADDITION TO GROWING AS ASSET MANAGERS, BANKS CONTINUED TO HONE THEIR SKILLS AS DISTRIBUTORS OF INVESTMENT PRODUCTS.

ON THIS PAGE AND ON PAGE 11A ARE SOME OF THE BANKS THAT STOOD OUT IN STRIVING TO REACH THEIR GOALS.

GO PUBLIC

BlackRock Inc., the wholly owned money management unit of PNC Bank Corp. ($75.6 billion assets, Pittsburgh) took an unusual step for a bank-owned asset manager by pursuing an initial public offering.

TAP A NEW MARKET

U.S. Clearing, the securities clearing division of Fleet Financial Group ($107 billion, Boston) expanded its securities and fund clearing business, reaching beyond small brokers and banks to a firm that markets to the gay community.

GOSHOPPING

Banks continued their buying spree of asset management firms. Wachovia Corp. ($67 billion, Winston-Salem, N.C.), with its deal for Offitbank of New York; and Bank of New York ($68 billion), with a deal for Estabrook Capital Management Inc.

First Union Corp. ($230 billion, Charlotte) announced plans to buy additional distribution for its funds when it unveiled its proposal to buy Everen Capital Corp., a broker-dealer in Chicago.

AIM HIGH

Huntington Bancshares ($28 billion, Columbus, Ohio) set a $1 billion target for investment product sales next year. Helping to meet that ambitious goal is a program that pairs branch employees with licensed brokers who act as sales coaches.

GO NATIONAL

The asset management arm of Unionbancal Corp. ($32 billion, San Francisco) took its mutual funds national. The San Francisco company's HighMark Capital started selling through regional brokerage firms and investment advisers, mostly in the West, and is gradually working its way eastward.

JOINTHECROWD

Amcore Financial Inc. ($4 billion, Rockford, Ill.), Comerica Inc. ($37 billion, Detroit), and Huntington Bancshares ($28 billion, Columbus, Ohio) introduced on-line brokerage services, following in the footsteps of many other bank brokerage units.

CELEBRATEYOURSELF

Mercantile Bancorp. ($36 billion, St. Louis), Fifth Third Bancorp. ($32 billion, Cincinnati), and Huntington Bancshares ($28 billion, Columbus, Ohio) joined the pack of banks that have stamped their brand names on proprietary mutual funds.

GO GLOBAL

Mellon Bank Corp. ($49 billion, Pittsburgh) created a new position to pursue joint venture opportunities in investment management in Europe and Japan and find new markets for its mutual funds. Francis D. Antin was appointed chief operating officer of Dreyfus Global Investors.

REDECORATE

Republic National Bank, a subsidiary of Republic New York Corp. ($51 billion), opened investment lounges in its branches. Devised to boost awareness of the bank's full-service brokerage service, the lounges offer investment information and seminars in a low-pressure setting.

CAST A WIDE NET

Roughly 20% of the mutual fund sales of Bank One Corp. ($256 billion, Chicago) came from outside its franchise, up from 1% two years ago, thanks to the addition of wholesalers.

Wells Fargo & Co. ($205 billion, San Francisco) and Fleet Financial Group ($107 billion, Boston) also increased efforts to sell funds through third-party brokers.

FIND A NICHE

Chase Manhattan Corp. ($357 billion, New York) began touting its offshore mutual funds to nonresident aliens in international communities in New York and Texas.

SHOW 'EM THE MONEY

The brokerage arm of National City Corp. ($84 billion, Cleveland) inked a three-year agreement to become the official investment firm of the Cleveland Browns football team. The agreement also made the company's Armada Funds family the team's official mutual funds.

PACKAGE IT

CitiGroup ($690 billion, New York) said it would offer three of its four fund families in one 401(k) program.

PLAYTHEGAME

Proving you don't have to be a giant to play like one, Richmond County Financial Corp. ($2.8 billion, Staten Island, N.Y.) bought a 47% equity stake in Peter B. Cannell & Co. a New York investment boutique CROSS-SELL

Northern Trust Corp. ($30 billion, Chicago) coordinated the sales efforts of its investment management team with other units such as retirement plan administration and custody in an effort to bolster cross selling PROMOTE IT

First Union Corp. ($230 billion, Charlotte) launched a television advertising campaign to tout its Evergreen Fund family. Fleet Financial Group ($107 billion, Boston) continued its 1998 campaign for its Galaxy Funds into the New Year. THINK TAXES

SunTrust Banks Inc. ($93 billion, Atlanta) was among several institutions that manage mutual funds to launch a fund aimed at minimizing the tax burden for investors. TARGET A MARKET

Bank of America Corp. ($614 billion, Charlotte, N.C.) set its sights on the rapidly growing Hispanic and Asian markets, hiring specialized advertising agencies and planning foreign-language signs and brochures.

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