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Bank, Securities Firm Merger OK’d

April 21, 1998

WASHINGTON (AP) _ U.S. Bancorp of Minneapolis, the nation’s 15th largest bank holding company, won approval from the Federal Reserve Board to buy investment company Piper Jaffray Companies Inc.

The $730 million deal, approved by the Fed on Monday, is part of a recent wave of mergers between banks and securities companies as depression-era restrictions separating the two industries crumble.

Banks and brokerages are combining to broaden their businesses, cut costs and compete more effectively in the ever-changing marketplace for financial services.

The deal, announced in December, will enable U.S. Bancorp to offer investment banking and brokerage services through a new subsidiary called U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray Inc. Both companies are based in Minneapolis.

U.S. Bancorp, with $71.3 billion in assets, operates about 1,000 banking offices in 17 states from the Midwest to the West Coast. Piper has 89 retail sales offices in 19 Midwestern and western states and capital markets offices in 18 cities.

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