potential buyers are getting in position to bid on Norwest and Wells Fargo branches expected to be sold in Nevada and Arizona. Page 6


In legislation expanding credit union membership, Congress tried to do small banks a favor by introducing a limit on the nonprofits' business lending. But bankers contend the new cap is too high. Page 8

About 10% of all banks have converted to S corporations as a way to save on taxes and boost profits, a study found. Page 9


Laser Mortgage Management has fired its chief executive officer, citing pricing irregularities in securities portfolios he supervised. Page 10


The CommerceNet consortium has joined with the U.S. government to demonstrate a streamlined approach to catalogue purchasing. Page 19


Ellen S. Seidman, the OTS director, is pushing to overhaul the latest Commun-ity Reinvestment Act revisions just 13 months after they took effect. "I think we're goingto have to start taking a looka little sooner, because the world really is changing," Ms. Seidman says. Page 2

Privacy laws in foreign countries are making it difficult for U.S. regulators to detect money laundering, the General Accounting Office warned. Page 4


INSURANCE: To counter increased bank and brokerage insurance marketing programs, credit unions of all sizes are intensifying their sales efforts. Page 12

More U.S. institutions are entering the market for offshore variable annuities. Page 13

Investors who buy mutual funds through banks have put their spring fling with bond funds behind them. Page 14


Lehman Brothers intends to securitize $500 million of the loan that financed the purchase of the General Motors Building in New York by Donald Trump and Conseco. Page 17


Bank of Montreal, Canada's third-largest bank, plans to sell $1 billion of 10-year asset-backed bonds, said bankers familiar with the sale. Page 30

Smaller banks have a new friend in the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation. It aims to invest at least $25 million in shares of such banks to augment a fund for state residents hurt on the job. Back page

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