WASHINGTON: NEW MEXICO's superintendent of insurance has given up his legal challenge to the controversial Retirement CD, paving the way for First National Bank of Santa Fe to offer the product. Page 2 REGIONAL BANKING: FIRST FIDELITY Bancorp. has joined an international banking technology consortium that will give its customers access to foreign exchange and other services from European institutions. Page 5 FIRST UNION has formed a joint venture with Lippo Group, an Indonesian bank, to market its services across Asia. Page 5 INVESTMENT PRODUCTS: MERLIN R. GACKLE, president of Invest Financial Corp. for the past year, is adding the titles of chairman and chief executive. Page 14 BANK OF OKLAHOMA has taken under its own roof the management of all eight funds in its American Performance Funds family. Page 15 COMMUNITY BANKING: WHILE MOST states in the country are wrestling with the prospect of nationwide branching, bankers in Georgia are still trying to get over the county line. Page 8 CREDIT UNIONS: VALENTINE's DAY was a heartbreaker for two credit unions pursuing the industry's biggest merger. Even insiders of Patelco Credit Union opposed its combination with First Technology Federal during a seven-hour hearing last week. Page 10 A SEATTLE institution, Credit Union of the Pacific, is gearing up to be a player in the city's low- and moderate-income housing market. It's offering a 1% down payment mortgage for first-time homebuyers. Page 11 SMALL BUSINESS: LIKE MILLIONS of other small-businessmen when it comes to buying supplies, making travel plans, or reserving a booth at a trade show, Ed Anderson reaches for his credit card. Mr. Anderson owns and manages a doughnut- machine business in the Minneapolis area. Page 12 WARNING: If you're not already on the road to automating and centralizing your small business operations, you're probably losing your best customers to those who have. That somber message underlay all the upbeat sessions at a recent small business banking conference. Page 13 MORTGAGES: M&T MORTGAGE has opened a West Coast operation. And it has hired a home- lending star - Jeffrey A. Evershed, former president and chief executive of Keycorp Mortgage Co. - to get the venture going. Page 16 FREDDIE MAC is requiring earthquake insurance on some condo properties whose mortgages it will buy, in view of last year's Southern California temblor. Many condo associations had no quake insurance or carried high deductibles, and as a result, many were forced to dissolve and members lost their homes. Page 17 WEEKLY DIGEST: THE BREWING FIGHT over the National Association of Securities Dealers' plan to regulate bank brokerages broke into open hostilities last week. This and other events of last week in American Banker are reviewed. Page 18 CREDIT/DEBIT/ATMs: ISSUERS of bank cards earned an estimated 3.9% return on assets in 1994, according to an informal industry survey by investment banker Robert K. Hammer. Page 20 VISA U.S.A. said its total payments volume grew 28% in 1994 - the highest growth rate in the last 10 years - to $290.7 billion. Page 21 TECHNOLOGY: EFTA, the Electronic Funds Transfer Association, has elected seven prominent electronic banking executives to its board, including Denny D. Dumler, president of Plus System, and Richard P. Yanak, president of Infinet Payment Services. Page 22 BANK SOUTH has lost three high-ranking technology officers, less than two months after it announced a restructuring in its retail banking area. Page 23 FINANCE: CALIFORNIA is moving again economically, so fewer of its consumers and businesses are likely to join the exodus to its neighboring states. The Golden State's lengthy recession had sparked impressive loan growth for banks in the Rocky Mountain states. Back page
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