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MERIDIAN BANCORP AGREES TO SETTLE SHAREHOLDERS' LAWSUITS BUT DENIES SUITS' MERIT

 MERIDIAN BANCORP AGREES TO SETTLE SHAREHOLDERS'
 LAWSUITS BUT DENIES SUITS' MERIT
 READING, Pa., Sept. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Meridian Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ: MRDN) announced today that it has agreed to settle pending shareholders' lawsuits arising out of Meridian's September 1990, announcement of a $75 million special provision for loan losses.
 The $3,250,000 settlement, subject to the approval of the federal district court, will be funded in large part by insurance proceeds. The settlement will not have any impact on Meridian's third quarter results.
 Although it firmly contends that the litigation is without merit, Meridian believes that the settlement represents a comparatively inexpensive way, in terms of both managerial resources and money, to avoid potentially lengthy and time-consuming litigation.
 The suits were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania following Meridian's announcement of the $75 million provision for loan losses. In that announcement Meridian, in response to the downturn in the regional economy, said it was establishing the special provision in the third quarter of 1990. The suits are like dozens of other suits filed against financial institutions during 1989 and 1990.
 If the settlement is approved by the court, the settlement amount would be placed in an escrow account, handled by a third party administrator, for the benefit of class members who purchased Meridian common stock between Aug. 17, 1989, and Sept. 26, 1990, and who meet certain other conditions. Class members would receive information from the Court relating to their rights sometime in October.
 /delval/
 -0- 9/18/92
 CONTACT: George E. Biechler of of Meridian Bancorp, 215-655-2470/
 (MRDN) CO: Meridian Bancorp, Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: FIN SU:


MJ -- PH028 -- 1256 09/18/92 16:04 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 18, 1992
Words:284
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