Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is demanding congressional hearings on whether the thrift industry should pay judgments from the regulatory goodwill litigation.

"It would be wrong for the taxpayers who have borne the brunt of the savings and loan bailout to now be required to pay the judgments of these goodwill suits," Mr. Nader wrote Monday in a letter to House Banking Committee Chairman Jim Leach.

A federal judge ruled last week that the government must pay Glendale Federal Bank $909 million for eliminating a favorable accounting treatment granted in the 1980s to acquirers of ailing thrifts. Nearly 100 similar suits seeking $20 billion in damages are pending.

Robert R. Davis, director of government relations for America's Community Bankers, said it would be unfair to require thrifts to pay the tab for a problem they did not cause.

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