Sen. Lauch Faircloth was set to introduce legislation Sept. 11 that he said would protect his constituents from "sham" lenders peddling unsolicited loan checks that carry "sky-high" interest rates.

However, the North Carolina Republican backed off at the last minute when he realized that home-state banking giant First Union Corp. will soon acquire roughly $1 billion in unsolicited loans as part of its purchase of Signet Banking Corp., Richmond, Va.

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