Business: Savers' Bonanza

A $10,000 hot ticket

Southwest Bank in St. Louis is no financial leviathan, but its starchy chairman, Isaac Long, 79, likes to throw his weight around when it comes to interest rates. In 1974 Long's bank (assets: $150 million) became the first in the nation to cut rates after nearly a year of steady increases. Last week he was out in front again. He chopped Southwest's prime lending rate to its most credit-worthy borrowers a quarter-point, to 11.5%, touching off speculation that a climb of almost two years in the prime might soon end....

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