Reports of big profit gains kept rolling in last week from large western thrifts and regionals. Expense controls helped the California contingent, and strong local economies buoyed those elsewhere.

The regional banks reporting improvements included U.S. Bancorp, Portland, Ore., which earned $127 million in the second quarter, 29% more than a year earlier; and First Security Corp., Salt Lake City, with an 18.5% increase to $42.9 million.

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