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CRESTAR FINANCIAL CORPORATION REPORTS FOURTH QUARTER EARNINGS

 RICHMOND, Va., Jan. 14/ PRNewswire/ -- Crestar Financial Corporation (NASDAQ-NMS: CRFC) today reported net income of $79.8 million or $2.32 per share for 1992, compared to the $33.8 million or 98 cents per share earned in 1991. Return on assets was 0.67 percent, return on total equity was 9.50 percent and return on common equity was 9.73 percent.
 Net income for the fourth quarter of 1992 totaled $27.9 million or 78 cents per share compared to $7.3 million or 21 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 1991. Return on assets was 0.92 percent, return on total equity was 12.17 percent, and return on common equity was 12.51 percent.
 Richard G. Tilghman, chairman and chief executive officer of Crestar, attributed the increased earnings to strong growth in core operating earnings and significant improvement in the company's credit quality. "Earnings for 1992 were more than double our 1991 results, and non-performing assets have declined for the fifth consecutive quarter. As we move into 1993, we are well positioned to take advantage of the opportunities that an economic recovery will bring. We expect continued earnings and credit quality improvements throughout 1993."
 Citing Crestar's success in taking advantage of expansion opportunities within its markets, Tilghman also noted that net income for the year included approximately 15 cents per share from the acquisition of deposits and selected assets of Perpetual Savings Bank from the Resolution Trust Corporation in January of 1992.
 Tax-equivalent net interest income increased 12 percent in 1992, driven by a 38 basis point improvement in the net interest margin to 4.67 percent and a 3 percent increase in average earning assets. The margin for the fourth quarter was 4.87 percent, up from 4.17 percent during the fourth quarter of 1991. Average core deposits grew by 16 percent for the year and were a major contributor to the improvement in the net interest margin.
 Total non-interest income of $218.4 million in 1992 decreased 7 percent from 1991. Excluding securities gains of $3.6 million in 1992 and $48.2 in 1991, non-interest income increased 16 percent from the prior year due primarily to strong growth in deposit account income and mortgage origination and servicing income.
 Non-interest expense was $501.8 million vs. $405.6 million last year. Approximately $61.3 million of this increase was related to higher foreclosed properties expense and expenses associated with recent acquisitions.
 The provision for loan losses was $18.7 million in the fourth quarter of 1992 and $99.2 million for the full year, down from $50.1 million in the fourth quarter of last year and $209.5 million for the full year of 1991.
 Net charge-offs declined to $24.1 million or 1.48 percent of average loans in the fourth quarter of 1992 and $113.9 million or 1.69 percent of average loans for the year. Comparable numbers for 1991 were $50.5 million or 2.87 percent of average loans in the fourth quarter and $150.7 million or 2.07 percent of average loans for the year.
 Non-performing assets fell by $45.3 million during the quarter to $220.8 million or 3.32 percent of loans and foreclosed properties and 1.74 percent of total assets at Dec. 31, 1992. The total includes $142.2 million in non-performing loans and $78.6 million in other real estate. This compares with $350.0 million in non-performing assets at Dec. 31, 1991, and represents the fifth consecutive quarterly decline in non-performing assets.
 The allowance for loan losses at Dec. 31, 1992, was $205.0 million and represented 3.11 percent of loans, 93 percent of non-performing assets and 144 percent of non-performing loans.
 During the fourth quarter, Crestar completed a public offering of 3.45 million shares of its Common Stock at a price of $29-1/4 per share. The net proceeds from the sale of these shares are being used by Crestar for general corporate purposes including investments in its banking subsidiaries.
 In keeping with its strategy of expanding within existing geographic markets, Crestar concluded the year by entering into a definitive agreement under which Crestar will acquire CFS Financial Corporation, a $962 million-asset holding company for Continental Federal Savings Bank, a federally chartered savings institution headquartered in Fairfax, Va. The merger is expected to occur in mid-year 1993.
 Crestar Financial Corporation is the holding company for three banks with 289 banking offices in Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. Other subsidiaries provide insurance, discount brokerage, mortgage banking and investment advisory services. At Dec. 31, 1992, Crestar had total assets of $12.7 billion and total deposits of $9.6 billion. Equity capital of $959 million represented 7.57 percent of assets.
 -0- 1/14/93
 /CONTACT: Eugene S. Putnam Jr., investor relations, 804-782-5619, or Tony Mattera, corporate communications, 804-782-7844, both of Crestar/
 (CRFC)


CO: Crestar Financial Corporation ST: Virginia IN: FIN SU: ERN

IH -- DC012 -- 4853 01/14/93 11:56 EST
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Date:Jan 14, 1993
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