U.S. Bancorp announced this week it will roll out a new home banking system based on Microsoft Corp. software starting next month.

Portland-based U.S. Bancorp will be the first of three financial institutions working with Microsoft to introduce the home banking service next year.

The service allows consumers with personal computers running Microsoft's Money personal finance program to check balances, transfer funds, and reconcile accounts. U.S. Bancorp will charge $7.95 a month for the service.

A new version of the software, announced with much fanfare by Microsoft chief executive Bill Gates in New York earlier this week, also lets PC users pay bills electronically.

First Chicago Corp. and Michigan National Corp. also plan to launch the service, called Bank On-Line, next year. National Payment Clearing House Inc. will provide network and transaction switching services.

Microsoft officials said there are already one million users of previous versions of Microsoft Money, although it is a distant second to Intuit Inc.'s Quicken personal finance software, which has over sold over 5 million copies.

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