MasterCard International's global technology and operations division named the credit card units of Associates Corp., Fleet Financial Group, Household International, and MBNA Corp. winners of its 1998 Masterquality awards.

The awards are given for customer service availability and response times, Cirrus processor availability, and use of the Mastercom imaging system for chargebacks.

MBNA took first place in Mastercom use, customer service availability, and Cirrus processor availability, while Household came in first in customer service response time. Associates was second in customer service availability and Cirrus processor availability, and Fleet was second in Mastercom use.

"The Masterquality performance award program is just one example of how we emphasize the importance of high performance and continuous improvement to our members," said Lois McFarland, vice president of MasterCard's quality and process improvement division.

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