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WASHINGTON MUTUAL SAVINGS BANK: NEW FEDERAL 'TRUTH IN SAVINGS ACT' TO AFFECT NORTHWEST CONSUMERS

 SEATTLE, June 18 /PRNewswire/ -- A new federal law that goes into effect Monday will affect thousands of Northwest consumers by requiring banks to provide uniform descriptions of accounts and interest rates, according to Washington Mutual Savings Bank (NASDAQ: WAMU).
 The Truth in Savings Act will require all banks to report interest in the same way. New account disclosures and bank marketing materials that refer to interest rates must post an "annual percentage yield," the actual interest rate the customer is going to earn. All banks must calculate this yield in the same way.
 The law makes it easier for customers to comparison shop among banks. Among other things, the law:
 -- Forbids banks from calling their checking accounts free if there are any maintenance fees. For example, banks that charge customers for using a human teller can no longer call their checking accounts free. The law does not affect Washington Mutual's accounts because the bank does not have such charges and offers free checking to customers who have another account with the bank.
 -- Banks will no longer be able to advertise "teaser rates" on certificates of deposit -- those are deceivingly large rates that decrease substantially
after a limited time. Advertising now must include annual percentage yield, which takes into account the average balance during a statement cycle, the number of days and the amount of interest.
 Washington Mutual will be in full compliance of the new law on Monday. Founded in 1889, Washington Mutual is the largest local, independent bank in the state and the largest consumer bank in the Northwest.
 -0- 6/18/93
 /CONTACT: Roger Nyhus of Washington Mutual Savings Bank, 206-461-6390/
 (WAMU)


CO: Washington Mutual Savings Bank ST: Washington IN: FIN SU:

SW -- SE004 -- 3601 06/18/93 13:29 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 18, 1993
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