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SOCIETY NATIONAL BANK RECEIVES SECOND CONSECUTIVE OUTSTANDING RATING IN COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT ACT PERFORMANCE

 CLEVELAND, Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Society National Bank announced today that it has received a second "Outstanding" rating from the Office of the comptroller of the Currency (OCC) for its community reinvestment performance throughout Ohio. A report was recently released by the OCC, following a performance evaluation conducted as of October 16, 1992.
 Society was one of the first major banks in the country to receive an Outstanding rating in October of 1990, when the first cycle of CRA ratings were publicly disclosed. Society's new CRA Performance Evaluation is contained in a 47-page report by the OCC. Mentioned in the report are Society's excellent performance in its ascertainment of community credit needs, participation by the board of directors in formulating its CRA policies, its marketing efforts to the entire community, its geographic distribution of credit extensions and its participation in local community development and redevelopment programs.
 Henry L. Meyer III, president of Society National Bank, said, "This OCC rating confirms Society's continuing commitment to the people and communities we serve throughout Ohio. Our aggressive approach in developing and implementing a responsive community relations program supports our ongoing goal of assessing and meeting the changing needs of our markets.
 "Through the interaction of Society employees with key community leaders and organizations, we are able to maintain strong partnerships that deliver our products and services to all customers, especially at the local neighborhood level. Besides professionally working to meet the credit needs of the local market, employees regularly invest their time, energy, expertise and enthusiasm as volunteers in the community."
 According to Jerome G. McClain, senior vice president of Community Relations, Society takes its leadership role in the community seriously. "Together with neighborhood groups, local development agencies, housing organizations and government leaders, our resources can help build and restore healthy and vibrant communities," he said. "Our CRA compliance is not only a matter of priority that starts with the board of directors, but we see it as an opportunity and challenge."
 Covering the period between October of 1990 and Oct. 16, 1992, the report includes a partial review of Society Bank, N.A., Dayton, which was merged into Society National Bank on Feb. 17, 1992. Society Bank, N.A. had previously been rated Outstanding in their August 1991, OCC examination. Ameritrust Company, N.A., is also covered in the disclosure for its CRA activities from its previous exam of Feb. 25, 1991 to the merger with Society on July 13, 1992.
 Specifically, the OCC said that Society considered the needs of the community in its product offerings. Society's HomeAssist program is cited as a successful mortgage product designed to make home ownership more affordable for low and moderate income families in many market areas. Through a combination of downpayment assistance and budget planning, a significant number of home mortgages have been provided under HomeAssist.
 In addition, Society's broad-based program for meeting the credit needs of the community was acknowledged with specific recognition for its willingness to work with local governments and groups. Singled out in the OCC report was the Cleveland Neighborhood Reinvestment Plan, where a total commitment to the city, including lending and direct investment, was approximately $270 million over a four-year period. Not only was Society cited for its aggressive goals, but also for its cooperation with the Community Oversight Committee, where comprehensive reports on its performance are being furnished quarterly.
 Mention is also made of Society's marketing efforts to the Hispanic community with brochures and advertising in Spanish. According to the report, these efforts show a ready responsiveness to extend significant amounts of business and real estate credit in its markets.
 A considerable amount of data is provided in the report with regard to the geographic distribution of credit extensions, credit applications, and credit denials. An analysis by the OCC determined that Society's market share percentages (based on Home Mortgage Disclosure Act - HMDA - aggregate tables) of various types of home mortgage and home improvement loan transactions are constant across low- moderate, middle, and high income areas within Metropolitan Statistical Areas. Although it was not specifically documented in the tables, the bank's market share is generally larger in neighborhoods which are predominantly minority than in integrated or predominantly white areas.
 Society was also commended for its record of opening and closing offices by going beyond the performance normally expected to ensure that the interest of present and potential customers was not adversely affected through the impacts of a large, in-market merger (Ameritrust). Despite the required divestiture of branches due to antitrust considerations and the consolidation of 58 branches in close proximity of each other, there was no unacceptable diminishing of services to low and moderate income areas.
 Other performance rating categories used by Federal regulatory agencies are Satisfactory, Needs to Improve, and Substantial Non- Compliance. Less than 10 percent of the national banks rated by their regulatory agencies have received an "Outstanding" rating.
 Copies of the Society National Bank public disclosure of the CRA Performance Evaluation are available from the Branch Manager at the 127 Public Square office in Cleveland or by calling Society's Community Relations office at 216-689-3871.
 Society National Bank, the largest bank in Ohio, is an affiliate of Society Corporation (NYSE: SCY), one of the largest bank holding companies in the Midwest. As of Sept. 30, 1992, Society Corporation had $24 billion in assets, $1.8 billion in equity capital, $3.3 billion of market capitalization and more than 465 banking and trust offices in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Texas, Florida, New York, Colorado and Missouri. Society's trust business ranks nationally in the top 15 in terms of revenues. Through its affiliates, Society engages in commercial banking, consumer banking, mortgage banking and leasing, and investment management and trust services.
 -0- 1/11/93
 /CONTACT: John Fuller of Society Corporation, 216-689-8140/
 (SCY)


CO: Society Corporation ST: Ohio IN: FIN SU: RTG

KK -- CL015 -- 3566 01/11/93 13:08 EST
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Date:Jan 11, 1993
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