Banks concerned that busy signals have kept customers from accessing their accounts through American Online Inc. might find relief if AOL bought Compuserve Inc.

Analysts agreed that buying Compuserve-a move widely believed to be in the works-would bring several benefits to America Online's home banking program, including an improved telecommunications network and users who are primed to bank on-line. Many users have had difficulty accessing America Online since it introduced a flat rate pricing option in December. The number of users and the length of their sessions skyrocketed, causing congestion on the network and busy signals for many of its nearly eight million customers.

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