The industry's focus on cutting costs in recent years is showing some results. In this issue, we report that the median efficiency ratio for the top 100 bank holding companies has been moving downward apparently a result of both systematic expense reduction programs and improved revenues. (See story on page 10A.)

We also take a closer look at Roosevelt Financial Group Inc., a St. Louis-area savings bank. Its efficiency ratio for the first nine months of last year was a lean 39.89%. Now, Roosevelt has set its sights on cross- selling more products to its existing base of customers to boost revenue.

Though he conceded that the strategy is not unique, chief executive Stanley Bradshaw said Roosevelt will apply the discipline it brought to a series of successful acquisitions to pursue its goal of retail banking excellence.

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