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TALLY OF 1992 BANKWATCH RATING CHANGES

 NEW YORK, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Thomson BankWatch today announced final tallies of 1992 bank rating changes. The results underscore BankWatch's clear conviction of the turnaround in the U.S. banking industry, in stark contrast to the continuing difficulties of many international banks.
 "We expect upgrades to continue to dominate U.S. bank rating changes in 1993," said Gregory A. Root, president, "and, since much of the expected improvement in banks' resulted has been factored into 1992 changes, there will be fewer total rating changes in 1993." Internationally, most rating changes during 1992 were downgrades, as many banks struggled through a difficult year, particularly in Scandinavia and Japan. The total number of rating changes (167) was nearly the same in 1992 as in 1991, yet there was a distinct change in mix: overall, two-thirds of the changes in 1992 were upgrades, while in 1991 less than one-third of the changes were favorable.
 Among the U.S. banks alone, nearly 90 percent of the 1992 changes were positive, reflecting the recovery in bank performance under way throughout the year. The downgrades that did occur emanated primarily from California. For U.S. banks, BankWatch anticipates that 1993 will be another good year, although performance will continue to be uneven as West Coast banks continue to grapple with a deteriorating real estate situation while recovery continues in other parts of the country.
 Outside the United States, downgrades continued to significantly outnumber upgrades. In fact, of the two non-U.S. upgrades in 1992, one was merger related, leaving only one attributable to fundamentals. Looking ahead to 1993, Root concluded, "It will be another difficult year for most international banks. Yet, because they enjoy much closer relationships with their regulators and governments (than U.S. banks), they may be able to work through their problems more efficiently."
 Worldwide, consolidation within the banking industry is seen as continuing, with activity in the United States expected to be at very high levels.
 BankWatch Rating Actions
 1992 1991
 Upgrades Downgrades Total Upgrades Downgrades Total
 U.S. 108 13 121 51 75 126
 International 3 43 46 2 37 39
 Total 111 56 167 53 112 165
 Founded in 1974 and widely considered the industry standard for bank ratings, Thomson BankWatch monitors more than 400 banks, thrifts, securities firms, and insurance companies, providing the world's largest financial institutions, money managers, corporations, and government regulators with vital information on credit risk.
 -0- 1/13/93
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: This communication is not an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy the securities mentioned. The information contained herein is derived from publicly available sources and Thomson BankWatch, Inc. makes no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of such information./
 /CONTACT: Sharon Haas, executive vice president, 212-510-0315, or Dianne Del Bello, senior vice president, 212-510-0309, both of Thomson BankWatch/


CO: Thomson BankWatch, Inc. ST: New York IN: FIN SU: RTG

CK -- NY053 -- 4489 01/13/93 14:28 EST
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Date:Jan 13, 1993
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