Big banks overwhelmingly endorsed a Fed proposal to eliminate three of the firewalls that separate commercial and investment banking. Page 2

The OCC issued a 10-page bulletin to national banks outlining risks posed by stored-value cards and encouraging specific consumer disclosures. Page 4


Bank of Boston, underscoring the seriousness of its efforts to build a capital markets business, has hired a top expert away from Chase to be managing director of global foreign exchange. Page 7


A Kentucky thrift has rid itself of four hostile investors whom federal regulators had ordered to sell their stock. Page 8

Oregon's Bank of Salem is taking its low-overhead, high-yield approach on the road. The one-office bank plans to open a second, in Portland. Page 8


Banc One, an also-ran in the bidding for Boatmen's Bancshares, criticized NationsBank 's $9.5 billion deal to buy the St. Louis bank. The price will give sellers unreasonable expectations, said Banc One's William Boardman. "I hear analysts talk about a wave of mergers and acquisitions in light of the Boatmen's deal. I don't agree." Page 22


The settlement in a California loan-bias case drew sighs of relief from the industry. There had been fears that the Justice Department, setting a burdensome precedent, would hold Long Beach Mortgage responsible for the actions of lenders that sold it loans. Page 9

Washington Mutual, in the midst of becoming one of California's biggest mortgage lenders, is also about to become No. 1 in Utah. Page 9


Banks face a traffic jam in converting common trusts to funds. Fund administrators are already with requests to schedule the conversions, made possible by a provision of the minimum wage law passed this summer. Page 11


Utah wants the private sector to fund a smart card driver's license in return for real estate on the chip. Page 12


Taking a cue from Far Eastern trading companies, one former Canadian banking executive has become a matchmaker for banks. Page 14

First Union has licensed technology for offering Internet-based bill payment services. Page 15

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.