Exxon Company U.S.A., the domestic oil and gas operating division of Exxon Corp., is the latest partner to join NationsBank Corp.'s 16-month-old Start credit card program.

The Start card, which is a joint product of NationsBank and Start Inc., a financial services company based in Herndon, Va., offers cardholders cash rebates on purchases.

The rebates, from 1% to 10% of purchases at 20 merchant partners, are deposited in an insured escrow account. When the account reaches $100, it can be withdrawn in cash or transferred into a long-term annuity with Metropolitan Life Insurance Company of New York.

Exxon Stations to Be Added July 4

Beginning July 4, cardholders who buy gas, automotive services, or car accessories at Exxon service stations will get a 2% rebate. NationsBank gives Start customers a 1% rebate for purchases made with the MasterCard or Visa card anywhere, and Exxon will donate 1%.

A spokeswoman for NationsBank said that Exxon's participation in the program is a significant enhancement of the card, because nearly 10,000 service stations will be added to the roster of merchants offering rebates.

Other partners include Eddie Bauer, Hertz, and Days Inn.

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