FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: MONDAY, AUGUST 26, 1996

NEW YORK -- The Federal Reserve Bank of New York Monday approved the application by BanPonce Corporation, Hato Rey, Puerto Rico; Popular International Bank, Inc., Hato Rey; and BanPonce Financial Corp., Wilmington, Del., to acquire COMBANCORP, and thereby indirectly acquire COMBANCORP's wholly owned bank subsidiary, Commerce National Bank, both of City of Commerce, Calif.

According to standard procedure, the proposal cannot be completed for 15 days, pending review by the Justice Department.

The Reserve Bank acted under authority delegated by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.