Net interest income growth from mortgage originations and credit card activities drove up yearend net income at First Empire State Corp. by 15%, to $151.1 million.

The Buffalo banking company reported fourth-quarter net income of $40.4 million, or $5.68 a share, up from $36.8 million, or $5.03, a year earlier. For the year, earnings per common share rose 18%, to $20.97, from $17.78 in 1995.

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