American Express says it will cut up to 100 employees as a result of the merger with the Company’s consumer card and personal financial services businesses. The credit quality of the Hong Kong consumer market has been deteriorating this year with record bankruptcies and losses, according to The RAM Report ([www.ramreport.com]). Charge-offs have risen nearly 50% this year, and by year’s end, the number of bankruptcies in 2002 is expected to more than double, compared to 2001. The AmEx cuts represent 12% of the Company’s Hong Kong work force. There are nearly ten million credit cards in-force in Hong Kong.