Proposed Kansas Banking Law More Restrictive Than Oklaoma's

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Oklahoma bank holding companies could buy Kansas banks, and Kansas bank holding companies could buy Oklahoma banks, with the implementation of an interstate banking measure expected to be signed into law this week by Kansas Gov. Joan Finney.

Oklahoma enacted its first interstate banking law in 1986, and it became effective the following year. Kansas has been the last state without any form of interstate banking.

The Kansas measure, passed last week by the state Senate, provides potential interstate banking in six states, including Oklahoma. The measure allows interstate banking in those states which have reciprocal agreements.

Paul Foster, general counsel with the Oklahoma State Banking Department, said Oklahoma's interstate banking law differs from the new Kansas law because it is a nationwide law rather than a regional law. Oklahoma law does not designate states to which it may apply, but it does require reciprocity.

``The test is very simple,'' he said. ``Does the law of the state in question allow Oklahoma holding companies to own banks there in a way that is not more restrictive? If it appears not to be more restrictive, then it is allowed.''

He said neither law allows interstate branching. The laws of the two states merely allow holding companies - not individual banks - to cross state lines.

Foster said his knowledge of the Kansas law is limited because he has not yet seen a copy of it, but he expects that it will have a greater effect on border areas than on big cities.

He said it is not uncommon for people in communities near state lines to live in one state and bank in another.

He said small- to medium-sized banks may form holding companies to own other small- to medium-sized banks serving the same customers on the other side of the state line.

``These are relatively little banks, so they don't draw a lot of attention,'' he said.

``In this case, the stand alone bank is operated similarly to operating a branch. In the stand alone bank, you have a president and vice president, but they serve essentially as managers. So in effect, it can be the same as branching, except that you have to capitalize the bank on the other side of the state line whereas you don't with a branch.''

Supporters of the Kansas measure said it would allow the state to form its own interstate banking laws one step before Congess mandates it for all states. They also said it could provide more credit for small Kansas businesses. . .

- An Oklahoma-based mutual fund was listed as the top performer in the country for two consecutive weeks in February, according to Donoghue's Money Fund report.

The American Performance Cash Management Fund ended with a seven-day compounded yield of 7.53 percent on Feb. 19 and Feb. 26, according to Andrea Parks, public relations manager at the Bank of Oklahoma NA.

The BancOklahoma Trust Co., part of the Bank of Oklahoma, serves with Dallas-based AMR Investment Services Inc. as investment adviser of the American Performance family of mutual fund portfolios. They are distributed by Winsbury C. of Columbus, Ohio.

``Our economic work led us to forecast declining rates,'' said Rudy M. Thomas, senior vice president and chief investment officer of BancOklahoma Trust. ``Therefore we capitalized in this instance by extending the portfolio maturity to realize these returns.''

The American Performance Funds include the U.S. Treasury Fund, Cash Management Fund, Performance Equity Fund, Intermediate Bond Fund and Performance Bond Fund. . .

- An Automated Clearing House Originators' Seminar is set for March 28 from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Holiday Inn West, 801 S. Meridian Ave.

The seminar will cover options, benefits, costs, risks and procedures of originating Automated Clearing House transactions. …