WASHINGTON

House Banking Committee Chairman Jim Leach charged that the comptroller of the currency is violating his duty as a federal regulator by lobbying against pending financial reform. Page 2

REGIONAL BANKING

Burned out? Try taking a few months off to study polar bears on the Canadian tundra. That's what Mara Baranson of J.P. Morgan did. Page 6

A computer glitch last week left between 2,000 and 3,000 Iowa customers of Magna Group with useless teller machine and debit cards. Page 7

MORTGAGES

Mortgage securitizations fell dramatically in the first half, reflecting the industry's drop in new loan volume. Page 21

Allied Irish Banks is weighing whether to merge or sell two U.S. mortgage banks it acquired in mergers. Page 21

COMMUNITY BANKING

bankers are cautiously awaiting the outcome of a federal decision on whether to relax restrictions on who may sell agricultural trade options. Page 24

A midsize Illinois thrift holding company hired an Ohio investment banking firm to help it decide whether it's time to buy or to sell. Page 24

INVESTMENT PRODUCTS

INSURANCE: Sometime next year, Comerica's Texas subsidiary is expected to rename its group of five annuities to get the bank's name in the title. Page 26

CORPORATE FINANCE

Toronto Dominion, Chase Manhattan, J.P. Morgan, NationsBank, and the investment banking arm of Barclays made quick work of syndicating a $250 million loan for Nextel Communications. Page 27

An executive from Fitch Investors Service added his voice to the mounting warnings of risk in syndicated lending. Page 27

The former head of the Boatmen's Bancshares capital markets group has gone headhunting. Page 27

CREDIT/DEBIT/ATMs

FIRST USA BANK is issuing a platinum Visa card for Branson, Mo., targeting the six million visitors that the country music mecca welcomes each year. Page 28

Transaction volume at bank-owned ATMs rose 5% in 1996, but average traffic per terminal went down. Page 29

TECHNOLOGY

Mellon and the U.S. Treasury have plans for a Secure Electronic Transactions test that will let some of each organization's employees buy savings bonds or Army surplus goods on the Internet. Page 31

MARKET MONITOR

NEW DETAILS about First Michigan's pending sale to Huntington Bancshares offer a sobering glimpse of the problems facing smaller banks in today's merger and acquisition market. Page 38

An analyst at Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette Securities upgraded First Chicago NBD's stock, saying its outlook is "very attractive for the rest of this year and 1998." Back page

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