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SBA ranks Regions high

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — For the sixth consecutive year, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) ranked Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE: RF) third among large U.S. banks in an annual study measuring banks’ emphasis on lending to small businesses. And, the bank rates second in the Magnolia State.

According to the SBA’s Office of Advocacy report, “Small Business and Micro Business Lending in the United States, for Data Years 2007-2008,” Regions ranked third in the large bank category, behind two national credit card issuers, based on the most recent Consolidated Reports of Condition and Income (“Call Report”) data.

“Small businesses are the engine of our economy, and Regions has a long track record of providing capital to small businesses along with solutions to help small business owners manage all of their financial needs,” said Tim Laney, senior executive vice president and head of Regions’ Business Services group. “The SBA study results demonstrate Regions’ continued commitment to helping small businesses succeed through all economic cycles, including the current recession.”

The SBA ranked Regions second in Mississippi in 2009, up significantly from seventh in 2008. Birmingham, Ala.-based Regions ranked first in Alabama and Tennessee and second in Arkansas and Louisiana in addition to Mississippi. Regions improved or maintained its small business lending ranking in 14 of the 16 states where the bank operates.

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