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Fitch is seeking at least six more analytical professionals to fill analyst and associate director positions.

In the mean time, the rating agency has promoted Paul McCarthy, CFA from associate director to director. McCarthy has served as the product manager for franchise loan securitizations and has been with Fitch since 1996.

Additionally, Fitch has said Warren Wells is also coming on board as associate director and will be assigned to work on franchise loan securitizations with McCarthy. Warren comes to Fitch from FMAC were he worked as an avp/senior underwriter for both restaurant and C&G franchise loan underwriting.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston has appointed Elizabeth Mitchell and Louis D'Allesandro to public-interest directors on the banks' board of directors. Mitchell is a fellow at the Muskie School of Public Policy at the University of Southern Maine, and D'Allesandro is a member of the New Hampshire senate.

GMAC Residential Holding Corp., has promoted David Applegate to president and chief executive officer from chief financial officer. He is a 10-year veteran of the company. Applegate succeeds R. Michael O'Brian, who will serve in an advisory role as chairman of the company for the next 90 days to ensure a smooth transition of responsibilities.

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West LB has the mandate on a non-conforming credit card deal for Cross Country Bank. The deal, which will price sometime this quarter, will feature a Financial Security Assurance surety bond for the whole $400 million triple-A rated deal, market sources said. It is understood that Rothschild was originally set to run the books, but the deal came to West LB via the staffing migration that took place in November.

As spreads on the corporate debt market continue to be under pressure in Europe, the European telecom sector is expected to be turning to securitization this year. Securitization might offer them a good solution, sources say. Only one deal has closed since the beginning of the year in contrast to the busy U.S. market.

Household International has reported record net income for the year driven by a growth in its real estate-dominated domestic consumer finance business during the fourth quarter. The company reported net income of $492.7 million during the fourth quarter, up 12% from $438.8 million in the fourth quarter of 1999.

Provident Financial Group Inc. closed the fourth quarter of 2000 with a relatively low $1 million in net income, citing credit concerns, accounting changes and a rise in expenses related to its purchase of a multifamily servicer. The company's net income for the quarter was significantly lower than the $41.6 million seen in 1999. Despite the quarter's disappointing results, Provident reported that it is optimistic that loan growth from all our businesses will bolster future earnings.

America's Community Bankers and Fannie Mae have teamed up to aid the trade group's members in using the secondary mortgage market. The alliance sets up a delivery mechanism through which community banks can sell to Fannie Mae and compete against nationwide lenders.

PNC Mortgage Acceptance Corp. has filed a $2.3 billion shelf with the Securities & Exchange Commission to sell mortgage-backed securities.

Surprising to many industry pros, the Bank for International Settlements in Basel (BIS) proposal, which was released for commentary last week, included a 32-page section on securitization. A source following the developments said that there are new guidelines addressing operational risk - which involves asset servicing - and a discussion on "when cash advances become credit facilities": both topics should be interesting to those concerned with securitization, the source said. The documents are available at www.bis.org. More on this next week...

Japan-based Chase Trust Bank Ltd., a subsidiary of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., is teaming up with Credit Saison Co., a Japanese credit firm, to collect asset-backed securities sold in Japan. The assembly of the two companies will mark the first partnership in a structured finance transaction in Japan. The two will provide a back-up service for asset backed transactions reducing the risk for first time market participants and lower rated sellers.

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