STATE OF BUSINESS: Onward

The first of the New Year's financial reports trickled in last week, and the statements added still more color to the economy's bloom. Across the U.S., big bankers found record earnings. With plentiful credit and steady repayments. Manhattan's First National City Bank reported net earnings of $42 million for 1955, 26% better than 1954; Manufacturers Trust (earnings: $16 million), Chemical Corn Exchange ($17 million), Guaranty Trust ($24 million) were all up from 10% to 29%. But California's huge Bank of America, the world's biggest private bank, had the biggest profit of all. It went into 1956 with resources of...

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