WASHINGTON:

WASHINGTON's banking community was in stitches last week thanks to two phony memos parodying an exchange between House Banking Committee Chairman Jim Leach and Speaker Newt Gingrich. Page 3

AN ADMINISTRATIVE law judge has recommended throwing out Office of Thrift Supervision charges against a prominent industry consultant who served on the board of directors of a Florida thrift. Page 2

REGIONAL BANKING:

J.P. MORGAN & CO. will seek to play a major role advising privatizations in India, said executives of the company's investment banking joint venture there. Page 4

SUNTRUST BANKS flagship Trust Company of Georgia, best known for corporate banking and personal trust services, has formed a subsidiary to make small loans to credit-impaired consumers. Page 4

MORTGAGES:

EIGHT OF NINE regions in the country showed increases in home prices in the second quarter, according to figures compiled by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Nationwide, prices climbed 2.7%. Page 12

JOINT VENTURES remain a hot area of business for real estate brokerage companies and lenders despite word that some deals may not be as profitable as expected. Page 12

CREDIT UNIONS:

TRADE ASSOCIATIONS are accusing the chairman of credit unions' regulatory body of making statements to reporters that undermine the industry's safety and soundness. Page 8

CORPORATE credit unions in the Carolinas plan to merge in an effort to deal with increased competition and expected tough new regulations. Page 9

INVESTMENT PRODUCTS:

CENTURA Securities has stubbornly held its own in North Carolina's crowded field of bank-run brokerages. Page 14

DEUTSCHE BANK is betting that U.S. customers are ready to span the globe for stock picks. The German bank's New York-based subsidiary has applied to create nine funds, each linked to a different country's stock market. Page 14

CREDIT/DEBIT/ATMs:

ACXIOM CORP., a data processing company that serves the top nine credit card issuers, has signed an estimated $100 million, five-year contract with Citicorp. Page 16

VISA International has announced that its Australian smart card pilot is live; the San Francisco-based association thus takes the lead in its race with MasterCard International. Page 16

TECHNOLOGY:

BANK TECHNOLOGY stocks were mixed this week, as the red hot equities market lost some steam, at least temporarily. Page 18

FINANCE:

BANKS FINALLY may be on the verge of extricating themselves from one of the biggest bad loans of the international real estate bust. Back page

AN ANALYST at Alex. Brown & Sons, saying it's time for investors to wake up and discover Norwest, upgraded his rating on the midwestern banking giant from "neutral" to "strong buy." Back page

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