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Credit card companies came under fire as some lawmakers and experts blamed them for the tidal wave of consumer bankruptcy filings. Page 2

A judge's recent decision not to block implementation of the new credit union membership rule contained some discouraging words for the banking industry. Page 3


Short-term credit lines have become the financing of choice for bankers and corporate America's chief financial officers. But short-term debt carries its own set of risks for borrowers and banks alike. Page 4

Foreign banks are likely soon to increase their short-term credit lines to Brazil. "The Brazilian government has asked banks to maintain their trade and interbank lines," says William Rhodes, a Citibank vice chairman and a key figure in talks between U.S. banks and Brazil. "The response has been positive." Page 6


Oregon bankers, once content to stick close to home, are branching out. Page 8


Asset managers are jumping on the so-called tax-aware bandwagon, with a spate of mutual funds aimed at minimizing the tax burden for investors. Page 10


When the barriers to banking and insurance come down, bankers will find themselves in a world very different from what they had expected, writes Diogo Teixeira of Tower Group. Page 12


SMART CARDS: Officials of Rainbow Technologies said they are surprised and overwhelmed by the positive reaction to i-Key, a security device it is offering as an alternative to smart cards. Page 15

Working with a French technology company, Mondex International extended the capabilities of its operating system to the security realm. Page 15


HOME EQUITY: Associates First Capital's decision to shed 128 U.S. consumer finance branches presented an attractive opportunity to Citigroup's expansion-minded Commercial Credit unit. Page 19


Financial analysts from Merrill Lynch and Goldman, Sachs dominated the American Banker annual survey of Wall Street sharpshooters. Page 30

A selloff in the financial sector brought an end to a two week rally for insurer Conseco. Back page

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