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Washington Mutual Named One of the ``Best Companies to Work For'' by Fortune Magazine

SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 7, 2003--

             WaMu wins hearts and minds of its employees
           through its distinctive culture featuring teller
            dolls, trading cards and time off to volunteer

Washington Mutual (NYSE:WM), a Fortune 500 company, has been named to the 2003 listing of Fortune Magazine's "100 Best Companies to Work For" in America. WaMu is now part of an exclusive group of companies nationally to be recognized by the magazine in three areas: "Best to Work For," Best for Minorities" and "Most Admired."

"We are honored to be named one of the best companies to work for in America and have always believed that maintaining a strong commitment to our people and unique corporate culture plays an integral role in Washington Mutual's financial success and growth," said Kerry Killinger, Washington Mutual's chairman, president and CEO.

Companies that appear on Fortune's list are selected primarily on the basis of employees' responses to a confidential survey. In addition, analysts at the Great Place to Work Institute looked at WaMu's distinct culture, reflected in its most unique, if not most coveted, form of employee recognition - personalized trading cards that reward "WaMulians" for excellent customer service. Other examples of WaMu's culture include the company's quirky Action Teller dolls and its Committed Active Neighbors (CAN!) program, which provides employees up to four paid hours off per month to volunteer in the community.

Out of Fortune's "100 Best Companies to Work For," Washington Mutual placed 97th this year and it is the first time the company has earned this recognition. WaMu ranked No. 27 on Fortune's "50 Best Companies for Minorities" list and is No. 116 on the Fortune 500.

Washington Mutual maintains a performance-based environment and supports its employees with competitive benefits and extensive leadership training and growth opportunities. Washington Mutual recently unveiled a corporate leadership development center near its Seattle headquarters. The state-of-the-art facility, known as Cedarbrook, is the home for a structured leadership development curriculum designed to build leadership competencies, transmit the company's culture and values, and create strong working relationships.

About Washington Mutual

With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual (NYSE:WM) is a national financial services company that provides a diversified line of products and services to consumers and small- to mid-sized businesses. At September 30, 2002, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries had assets of $261.10 billion. Washington Mutual currently operates more than 2,500 consumer banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, consumer finance and financial services offices throughout the nation. Washington Mutual's press releases are available at www.wamu.com.


CONTACT: Washington Mutual
Olivia Riley, 206/377-3636