Magazine article American Banker

Bankers Roundtable Joins Chorus Backing Mellon-Dreyfus Deal

Magazine article American Banker

Bankers Roundtable Joins Chorus Backing Mellon-Dreyfus Deal

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON -- The nation's largest banks have thrown their weight behind the proposed acuqisition of Dreyfus Corp. by Mellon Bank Corp.

The transaction reflects "the fundamental changes currently under way in the banking industry," Anthony t. Cluff, executive director of the Bankers Roundtable, wrote to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

"We urge your approval...so that the industry can effectively manage such changes and meet the needs of its customers."

Mr. Cluff, whose trade group represents 125 of the nation's largest commercial banks, said that customers want their banks to sell mutual funds.

He added that banks need "flexibility from their regulators" to diversify, as they respond to competition from nonbank financial service companies.

The Roundtable letter was one of about 19 the Comptroller's office has recieved in response to its request for comment on the Mellon-Dreyfus deal and the acquisition of Lieber & Co. by First Union Corp. Some comments were expected to arrive after the Monday afternoon deadline.

While some powerful members of Congress have voiced concern about bank acquisitions of mutual fund companies, each of the letter filed by Tuesday morning was writtne in support of one or both of the deals.

Approval Is Expected

The lack of adverse comment "signals an expectation by the industry that the OCC will approve" the Mellon-Dreyfus deal, said attorney Melanie Fein of Arnold & Proter in Washington. …

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