Washington Federal of Seattle was the best-performing savings-and-loan in the country last year, according to research firm SNL Financial

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Washington Federal was the best-performing savings-and-loan in the country last year, according to an analysis of the 100 largest thrifts by research firm SNL Financial.

Seattle-based Washington Federal, which has about $10.6 billion in assets, has the nation’s highest return on average assets (1.35 percent) and the strongest efficiency ratio (23.6 percent), according to SNL.

Timberland Bancorp of Hoquiam placed seventh in the SNL ranking, and Riverview Bancorp of Vancouver came in 13th.

Washington Mutual, which SNL rated the 26th-best performing thrift in 2006, fell to 94th place last year, weighed down by its heavy exposure to subprime mortgages and other troubled home loans.