The Michigan Financial Institutions Bureau is giving state-chartered banks and thrifts a 4% break on their supervisory fees.

Commissioner Patrick M. McQueen said the department reduced its staff costs this year when nine employees took early retirement and were not replaced. Now the regulator is passing the cost savings along to Michigan banks.

Michigan is the third state to cut its supervisory fees over the past year, said Ellen Lamb, senior vice president of communications for the Conference of State Bank Supervisors. Ms. Lamb said she expects other state departments to follow suit as they realize savings from off-site examinations.

Mr. McQueen predicted that Michigan, which recently bought a computer system to conduct off-site exams, would reduce its fees again as bureau examiners become more efficient.

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