WASHINGTON

Personal bankruptcy filings rose nearly 20% last year, reaching a record of more than 1.3 million, according to data from Visa U.S.A. Page 2

Financial services consulting firm Furash & Co. has been sold to Interbank Communications, which advises the banking and hospitality industries. Page 2

REGIONAL BANKING

Despite launching a project in early 1997 to study its name, First Chicago NBD said it has put on hold any decisions about changing it. Page 4

NationsBank is evaluating sites in Florida for a national direct sales center similar to one it opened last year in Richmond, Va. Page 5

COMMUNITY BANKING

KPMG Peat Marwick is suing three Connecticut community banks, claiming they profited from tax advice without paying for it. Page 6

Houston-based Sterling has tapped the CEO of one of its branches to take over as president of the $1.1 billion-asset company. Page 6

CORPORATE FINANCE

Lehman Brothers and Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette launched a $475 million leveraged loan package for Loral Space and Communication. Page 7

MORTGAGES

Fidelity First Financial, a high-loan-to-value lender, hired a well- known Wall Street veteran as chief operating officer and chairman. Page 9

INVESTMENT PRODUCTS

J.P. Morgan changed the name of its proprietary mutual fund family to more closely align its brand with the corporate identity. Its retail portfolios were also renamed. Page 10

CREDIT/DEBIT/ATMs

CARD FRONTIERS: A Las Vegas start-up company is promoting a handheld device that lets people pay bills, shop, and even place bets over the telephone. Page 12

TECHNOLOGY

Harris Bank traded its lion mascot for the imagery of MBanx, the successful home banking program developed by its parent, Bank of Montreal. "We intend to build a dominant North American brand," said Charles Piermarini, senior vice president. Page 14

MoneyStar Communications of Austin, Tex., created new modeling software that works with its on-line financial network to let investment product brokers make graphical presentations to potential customers. Page 15

MARKET MONITOR

Citibank announced details of the rebate program that will replace its discontinued cobranding arrangement with Ford. Page 22

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