THE WEST: BankAmerica Corp., San Francisco, with $197.2 billion in assets, dominates the region and is always cited as a top player in the race to establish a nationwide branch banking network. It has targeted some regions as high priority but won't say which.

First Interstate Bancorp of Los Angeles, with $53.5 billion in assets, has begun acquiring aggressively in the past 18 months, but exclusively smaller fill-ins within its 13-state western territory. It has specifically targeted California, Texas, and Washington State for expansion.

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