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by CareyBot

Washington Mutual this week reported first quarter earnings of $1.05 billion, or $1.18 per diluted share, up 10 percent on a per share basis from the same period a year ago.   Growth the company's retail banking and financial services business, whose net income increased by 23 percent, led the results.   Total loan volume, however, was down to $62.2 billion, compared with approximately $109 billion in the first quarter of 2003. Home loan volume of $50.5 billion was down $49.5 billion from a year ago.   Washington Mutual said those drops were partially offset by the company's business model and strength in generating adjustable-rate mortgages. During the first quarter of 2004, ARMs represented 53 percent of the company's home loan origination volume, compared with 27 percent ...