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February 18 2005

Cathay Bank Foundation Renews Financial Education Program Funding to Benefit Greater Los Angeles, Bay Area and Orange County

LOS ANGELES – February 18, 2005 - To increase the reach of Banking on Our Future, Operation HOPE’s financial literacy program, the Cathay Bank Foundation renews funding of a $30,000 grant to benefit inner city youth in the Greater Los Angeles, Bay Area, and in Orange County.  In addition, during 2005, Cathay Bank will continue motivating its 40 volunteers to keep providing financial literacy seminars to hundreds of youth living in these areas.

“At Cathay Bank we take great pride in our corporate values, which stress social responsibility and hold community reinvestment at the center of our business philosophy.  We are pleased about our contribution to Operation HOPE and its Banking on Our Future program. We are delighted that our support will assist in providing teaching materials which in turn will help grow the number of schools that may benefit from this important program in 2005” commented Irwin Wong, Executive Vice President of Cathay Bank, and Director of Cathay Bank Foundation.

OHI’s Banking on Our Future program is an on the ground and online financial literacy program, which includes 11 program offices in Oregon, California, Illinois, Washington D.C., Georgia, Massachusetts, Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, and New York.  Since its inception this program has served over 140,000 youths nationwide. Banking on Our Future, winner of the Oprah’s Angel Network award and just recently, the U.S. Treasury Department’s John Sherman Award for financial literacy excellence, is America’s only national urban delivery platform for financial literacy in the country.  Using a growing network of 1,500 trained volunteer banker-teachers, the Banking on Our Future program teaches four core modules, about the basics of banking; how to open and maintain a checking and savings account; the power of credit; and basic investments.

"We appreciate Cathay Bank’s confidence in Operation HOPE by renewing its grant to Banking on Our Future.  But more important in helping our organization in our efforts to bridge the economic gap of inner city youth by teaching them good financial habits, the tools that will lead them to achieve financial independence," said OHI founder, chairman and chief executive officer, John Bryant.

The mission of Cathay Bank Foundation is to enhance the growth and success of communities where Cathay Bank serves. The Foundation's ultimate objective is to create opportunities in the areas of affordable housing, community and economic development, and education. The Foundation will also consider supporting cultural and arts, health and welfare, environmental and human services and programs that benefit the communities at large. The Cathay Bank Foundation, an affiliate of Cathay Bank is a nonprofit organization. For more information, please visit the Cathay Bank Foundation website at www.cathaybank.org