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FLEET FINANCIAL GROUP BANKS TO LOWER CREDIT CARD RATES

 FLEET FINANCIAL GROUP BANKS TO LOWER CREDIT CARD RATES
 PROVIDENCE, R.I., April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Fleet Financial Group's (NYSE: FLT) eight banks in New England and New York will reduce the interest rate charged to Mastercard, VISA and VISA Gold credit card customers to 14.9 percent, effective July 1, 1992, it was announced today.
 A. Christian Fredrick, senior vice president in Fleet's Products and Services Division, said credit card rates at the corporation's banks currently vary from state to state, with the planned rate reduction representing a drop of up to 3 percent.
 Concurrent with the rate decrease, Fredrick said, Fleet's banks will switch from the fixed-rate method of setting rates for their credit card portfolios to a variable-rate method. The new 14.9 percent rate is the current prime lending rate (the rate banks charge their most creditworthy business borrowers) plus 8.4 percent.
 "Fleet is pleased to be the first major New England bank to announce a significant credit card rate reduction," Fredrick said. "There are several reasons we believe the time is right for this action. It will benefit our existing credit card customers, as well as attract new customers, and we hope it will play at least a small part in the emerging economic recovery."
 Fredrick said the reduced credit card rate initiative also is "a natural extension of two other significant and highly successful reduced-rate lending programs by Fleet. The first was a 12 percent introductory credit card cash advance program. The second is Fleet's current home equity loan program offering a 6.5 percent fixed rate for the first year, the lowest rate in some 20 years."
 Fleet Financial Group, with more than 800 banking offices throughout the Northeast, operates a bank in each of the New England states except Vermont, and three banks in New York.
 Fleet Financial Group is a diversified financial services company listed on the New York Stock Exchange with approximately 1,300 offices nationwide. Its lines of business include commercial and consumer banking, mortgage banking, consumer finance, asset-based lending, investment management, and student loan processing.
 -0- 4/21/92
 /CONTACT: Robert W. Lougee, Jr., vice president corporate communications, 401-278-5879; Bruce P. Crooks, 401-278-6241; Charles T. Conway, Jr., 401-278-6240; or Thomas L. Lavelle, 617-573-7733, of Fleet Financial Group/
 (FLT) CO: Fleet Financial Group ST: Rhode Island IN: FIN SU:


PB -- NE010 -- 0521 04/21/92 10:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 21, 1992
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