WASHINGTON

A new court decision may drive up the industry's taxes by requiring loan expenses to be written off over the life of the credit. Page 2

REGIONAL

One year after launching a thrift subsidiary in Georgia, First Citizens BancShares, Raleigh, N.C., is using the charter to expand into Florida. Page 7

MORTGAGES

Top executives at Countrywide Credit Industries, the nation's largest independent mortgagecompany, profited handsomely from last year's burst of mortgage originations. Page 13

INVESTMENT PRODUCTS

More banks are starting to offer index funds through mutual fund wrap programs. Page 17

CARDS

Europay International reported making significant progress with the MasterCard Maestro debit card brand in Belgium and Switzerland. Page 18

COMMUNITY

The nation's top-performing community banks have taken varied routes to profitability. But what the high earners have most in common are strong local economies, attention to customer service, and a new tax structure. "The banks are reflecting the vibrancy of the economy," says ABA chief economist James Chessen. Page 8

DIGITAL FRONTIERS

Credit report leader Equifax joined forces with IBM to enter the digital certification business. Page 19

ON-LINE BANKING: Citicorp entered a comarketing agreement with a Virgin Group affiliate in the United Kingdom to offer its customers Internet access. Page 19

CORPORATE FINANCE

The CEO of Sunbeam got a good grilling from bankers as he sought investors for $2 billion worth of loans. Page 29

MARKETS

BAY VIEW CAPITAL said it would buy PSB Lending Corp. for $300 million, in what would be the first major move into the hot high-LTV mortgage business by a bank. Back page

WEEKLY REPORT: INTERNATIONAL

Even as Asia's financial crisis deepens, BankBoston sees big investment banking opportunities across the Pacific. Page 14

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