WASHINGTON - American banks stand to rake in profits and face increased risks if the United States, Mexico, and Canada agree to open their borders to more trade.

If Congress passes the North American Free Trade Agreement, U.S. and Canadian banks will - for the first time in nearly a decade - be allowed to open subsidiaries in Mexico, where only 18 banks now operate and there is one bank branch for every 18,000 people, compared to one for every 4,000 in the U.S.

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