First USA reported this morning third quarter net income of $279 million an increase of 58% over the year-ago quarter. Pre-tax return on outstandings soared to 2.64% compared to 1.97% for 2Q/01. First USA says the leap was produced by higher net interest income, lower credit costs, reduced expenses on the legacy First USA portfolio, and the addition of the Wachovia credit card business. End of period managed loans logged in at $66.8 billion. Charge volume increased 1.7% over the past 12 months, from $34.6 billion for 3Q/00 to $35.2 billion for 3Q/01. During 3Q/01, First USA opened over 1.1 million new accounts and ended the quarter with 58.4 million cards-in-force. Bank One/First USA also has 4.3 million debit cards-in-force. The managed charge-off rate increased to 5.89% from 5.03% a year ago, reflecting lower average loans on the First USA portfolio and higher losses, but decreased from 6.09% in the second quarter. The managed 30-day and 90-day delinquency rates were 4.25% and 1.80%, respectively, up from 4.14% and 1.79% in the year-ago quarter and 4.10% and 1.78% in the second quarter. For complete details on Bank One/First USA’s 3Q/01 performance as well as historical data visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).