THE HOUSE BANKING chairman has established an ambitious schedule for lawmakers negotiating financial reform legislation that would culminate in a mid-October vote. Page 2

LAWMAKERS seeking tougher money-laundering rules will have to walk a fine line between security and privacy, and banks may be caught in the middle. Page 3

TWO MAJOR finance companies are taking an unwarranted beating on Wall Street because of the interest rate concerns pummeling bank and thrift stocks, analysts said. Page 4

LIKE AN ASPIRING movie star, a Charleston, W.Va., banking company is aiming to make it big in California. Ultimately, City Holdings wants to have about 25% of its assets there. Page 6

FLEET HAS SEALED a deal to sell most of its castoff branches to Sovereign, but negotiations with community banks are going less smoothly. Page 6

SECURITY FIRST Technologies has agreed to buy VerticalOne, a move the company said would help banks better compete with Internet financial portals. The acquisition shores up S1's position as the dominant provider of Internet banking software and outsourcing services. Page 18

THOUGH LENDERS are scampering for business, the home building boom is continuing, with new home sales rising and most builders enjoying a backlog of orders. Page 8

A RISE in the cost of debt in July and August put a crimp in Freddie Mac's mortgage buying. Page 8

MERRILL LYNCH became the first U.S. asset manager to take advantage of a new Australian tax law that makes U.S. mutual funds more inviting. Page 10

ELEVEN EMPLOYEES from Bank of America's Sovran Capital Management unit have left to open a rival money management firm. Page 10

WITH THE DEPARTURE of its CEO, Intuit loses the day-to-day leadership of a key navigator of the company's journey into the Internet age. Page 15

REPUBLIC New York shares jumped 4.8%. A growing number of institutional shareholders said they believe HSBC Holdings will push through its $10.3 billion takeover bid. Back page

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