IRWINDALE, Calif. -- After nine years at the helm of H.F. Ahmanson & Co, Richard H. Deihl will retire as chief executive Friday, the thrift company announced.

The 65-year-old Mr. Deihl, a driving force in mortgage banking for the last quarter century, will remain chairman of the board. The company had already announced Mr. Deihl's plan to retire before the end of the year.

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