WASHINGTON: A REPUBLICAN member of the House Banking Committee is planning an amendment to Chairman Jim Leach's Glass-Steagall bill that would expand bank insurance powers and effectively mingle banking and commerce. Page 2 THE SENATE this week approved legislation that would place a moratorium on class actions against lenders for technical violations of the Truth-in- Lending law. Page 2 REGIONAL BANKING: BENEFICIAL CORP.'s first-quarter earnings were broadsided by an Internal Revenue Service policy change affecting a loan program backed by tax refunds. Page 4 TWO MIDWEST institutions posted lower first-quarter earnings, as strong loan growth wasn't enough to offset declines in noninterest income. Page 4 COMPLIANCE: A ST. LOUIS company that offers video and computer-based training guides boasts a client base of 21,000 bank branches across the country - up nearly 70% in just five years. Page 6 THOUGH BANKERS are glad they won't have to report borrowers' race and gender under revised CRA rules, the industry consensus is that data collection requirements on farm and small business loans will still mean a lot of work. Page 7 INVESTMENT PRODUCTS: HAS BANKING's fascination with marketing investment products reached its saturation point? That's what the BAI Foundation is asking after canceling a schedule two-day seminar for lack of interest. Page 9 MORTGAGES: HE HAS an easygoing style, but George Nicholas has formed one of the fastest-growing companies in home equity lending. Page 10 TECHNOLOGY: FIRST UNION Corp. has launched a national telephone banking service. Page 14 PUBLICLY HELD financial technology companies generally reported higher quarterly earnings over the past week, although a few firms attributed a squeeze in profits to a shrinking banking industry. Page 14 COMMUNITY BANKING: MORE BANKS are producing slick annual reports, but not all users are thrilled at the trend toward glossiness. Page 8 THE NATION's state banking supervisors have unanimously approved a new plan for supervising banks that operate interstate. Page 8 CREDIT/DEBIT/ATMs: H. ROBERT HELLER has returned to Visa - in nothing resembling the storm of controversy that accompanied his departure in August 1993. Page 13 FINANCE: SANWA BANK this week became the latest Japanese institution to unload a high-profile U.S. property - announced the sale of a million-square-foot New York office tower for $128 million, or about 36% of the original loan amount. Back page
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