SAN DIEGO -- Acting Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Andrew C. Hove Jr. said Monday that he wants to serve under President Bill Clinton.

"If the President asked me to stay, I would stay," said Mr. Hove, a Republican, during a press conference at the Savings and Community Bankers of America's annual convention.

Too Old for Banking?

"I'm at the age when I think I'm not interested in going back and working in a bank," said the 57-year-old regulator. He formerly ran a small bank in Nebraska.

Mr. Hove alo said the banking industry should report record earnings for the third quarter early next month. Banks already have reported two record quarters this year.

All five FDIC board seats will be open for appointments next year. By law, two seats must go to Republicans or independents of Mr. Clinton's choosing.

Talk with Clinton Aide

Mr. Hove said he hasn't asked for an appointment, but he acknowledged speaking to a member of Mr. Clinton's transition team. The transition team member, whom Mr. Hove declined to identify, wanted to know about the so-called "December surprise" and the makeup of the FDIC board, he said.

Based on his conversations with Mr. Clinton's people, Mr. Hove said, he expects the new administration to:

* Seek additional funding for the Resolution Trust Corp.

* Get behind interstate branching.

* Curb overly costly regulation.

"I sense there is an interest in both Congress and the new Clinton administration to take a look at how heavy the [regulatory] burden is," said Mr. Hove. "I'm optimistic they will relieve some of this."

Paul A. Schosberg, president of the thrift group, said he, too, recently spoke to a Clinton transition-team member. This economic adviser said the new President may offer thrifts both regulatory and tax "incentives" to make more home loans.

"I think the Clinton administration will take a very intense look at what is happening to the banking system," Mr. Schosberg said. Financial institutions must be "jump-started" for credit to begin flowing again, he said.

Robert Parry, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, also spoke at the convention, predicting 3% economic growth next year.

Relatively Bullish

He described that rate as "modest," but it is a full percentage point higher than many economists are predicting.

Mr. Parry's relative bullishness attributable to low interest rates.

"The discount rate is at 3%, the lowest it's been in three decades," he said, "and this easing works to stimulate spending on goods and services."

Lower interest rates also have been a stimulant to the housing market, with residential invesstment growing at an average rate of 11% for more than a year and a half, he said.

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