Fourth-quarter earnings hit a record, up about 11%, and the stock has been performing better than the Standard & Poor's bank stock index since September. That's when a restructuring was announced.

But now, just when things are going well, Gillespie announces he is retiring at the young age of 56. A KeyCorp spokesman says Gillespie long had been saying he wanted to retire early, and pointed out that other Key CEOs had retired at 63. But that's a long way from 56.

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