Regions Continues Bank Conversions; Final Round Set for November

Regions Financial Corp. of Birmingham, Ala., said Tuesday that it has completed the second phase of converting about 200 Union Planters Bank branches to Regions Bank systems and should finish the job in November.

The bank systems conversion took place Aug. 11-18 and included about 650,000 accounts in branches located in Mississippi, southern Alabama, western Tennessee and the greater Memphis area.

Mississippi is a new market state for Regions, and Memphis is the headquarters city for Regions Mortgage, Regions Insurance Group and Morgan Keegan & Co. Inc., the company's investment and brokerage arm.

Union Planters branches in Florida and the Midwest, which have been operating under the Regions name since January, will convert in November. Other markets were converted in April.

Last month, Regions Financial reported that quarterly earnings rose 56 percent to $248.4 million, or 53 cents per share. Executives said gains were driven by higher net interest income, continued low credit costs and additional cost saves related to Region's merger with Union Planters Corp. in 2004.

Regions Bank now operates in Arkansas, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

Regions Financial Corp., which entered Arkansas with the purchase of First Commercial Corp. in 1998, remains the largest banking operation in the state in terms of deposits.