FOREIGN BRANCHES: The Fed gave foreign bank branches the option of consolidating their accounts at a single reserve bank rather than maintaining separate accounts in every reserve district where they operate. Published Nov. 5. Effective Jan. 1.

DATA INTERCHANGE: The National Automated Clearing House Association adopted a rule Oct. 23 that requires all financial institutions that offer business accounts to send their corporate customers any payment-related information that accompanies ACH payments. Effective Sept. 18, 1998.

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