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FIRST BANK SYSTEM RATINGS RAISED BY THOMSON BANKWATCH

 FIRST BANK SYSTEM RATINGS RAISED BY THOMSON BANKWATCH
 MINNEAPOLIS, Dec. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- First Bank System, Inc.


(NYSE: FBS) announced that Thomson BankWatch raised the issuer rating on the company on Dec. 6 to "B/C" from "C." The short-term rating was raised to "TBW-1" from "TBW-2."
 Thomson BankWatch noted, "FBS continues to exhibit favorable operating results and stable asset quality. Given the favorable capital initiatives, reduced balance sheet risk and sound operating results, we believe FBS is more appropriately rated at 'B/C.'"
 First Bank System's Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, John F. Grundhofer, said, "We are very pleased with Thomson's rating action. We have made significant progress during the successful execution of our turnaround strategy. The company has reported improved net income each quarter since the fourth quarter of 1989. In addition to raising equity through earnings retention, First Bank System completed a $114.5 million issue of Convertible Preferred Stock in November 1991. We remain dedicated to further improving shareholder value."
 First Bank System is a regional bank holding company headquartered in Minneapolis with assets of $17.9 billion. The company provides complete financial services to individuals and institutions through 34 banks and trust companies with more than 158 offices located in Minnesota, Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Washington and Wisconsin.
 -0- 12/09/91
 /CONTACT: Wendy Raway, 612-370-5154, or Thomas Rice, 612-370-3596, both of First Bank System/
 (FBS) CO: First Bank System ST: Minnesota IN: FIN SU:


KH-DS -- MN005 -- 0456 12/09/91 10:13 EST
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Date:Dec 9, 1991
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