NEW YORK - Trustees continue to serve the mortgage industry well, despite rapid consolidation, aggressive pricing pressures, and super-thin margins that have wracked the corporate trust business in recent years, a new study finds.

The report by Fitch Investors Service Inc. "confirmed that the necessary controls and procedures are in place to protect investor interests."

Trustees act as impartial third parties on investors' behalf. In conducting the study, Fitch looked at services offered by Bank of New York, Bankers Trust Co., First National Bank of Chicago, and other leading trustees of residential mortgage-backed securities issues.

Fitch drew its conclusions after considering management, operating history, pricing, backup servicing capabilities, marketing, and new business development.

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