Washington Mutual Inc. late Thursday said its third-quarter provision for loan losses will fall by $1.4 billion from the second quarter, while the growth rate of net charge-offs — loans it doesn't think are collectable — will slow to less than 20%.

The troubled savings-and-loan — the nation's largest — said it would set aside $4.5 billion to offset current and future losses from souring mortgages, down from the $5.91 billion it set aside in the second quarter, while also noting its liquidity is stable at about $50 billion and net interest income will be in line with the second quarter.

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