The nation's capital remained the U.S. murder capital in 1990, but Miami had the greatest rate of all violent crime, according to information released Saturday by the FBI.

A record number of Americans, 732 per 100,000 residents, were affected last year by increased violent crime - murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault, the FBI said in its Uniform Crime Reports. In 1989 the figure was 664.Murder was up 8 percent last year, affecting 9.4 of every 100,000 people, according to calculations made by The Associated Press based on the FBI report.

Rape increased 8.1 percent, to 41.2 per 100,000, according to the figures. Robbery rose 10.3 percent, to 257 per 100,000, and aggravated assault was up 10.6 percent, to 424.1 incidents per 100,000.

Experts continued to blame the increase in crime on drugs.

The war on drugs "created a new class of organized crime, and this class is more violent than the old organized crime because it's made up of more crime-prone people: young, disenfranchised kids," said Gene Stephens, a professor at the University of South Carolina's College of Criminal Justice.

"That's going to be one of the legacies of the drug war," he said.

The FBI figures differ substantially from those in last week's National Crime Survey, which showed a 3 percent decline in the number of crimes in 1990 - due primarily to a drop in thefts.

However, the two reports aren't comparable because the NCS interviews individuals who detail many unreported crimes while the FBI counts only crimes reported to police.

The difference is evident in the numbers: The NCS said 34.8 million crimes occurred last year; the FBI says 14.5 million were reported to police.

The FBI figures indicated that Washington continued to be the city with the highest murder rate, 77.8 homicides per 100,000 residents. But the capital is ranked seventh in overall crimes of violence.

New Orleans, with 61.2 murders per 100,000, rose from fourth place in 1989 to second last year, swapping places with No. 2, Detroit. Atlanta remained in third place and St. Louis stayed in fifth.

But while the headlines highlight murders, some of the cities where the violence got substantially worse last year actually had fewer homicides.

Miami had three fewer slayings in 1990 than the previous year, but its overall violent crime rate jumped by almost 660, to 4,353 reported acts of violence per 100,000 people. The main cause was an increase in robberies.

Atlanta had the second highest overall violent crime rate among cities with populations of 300,000 or more, with St. Louis, Chicago and Detroit rounding out the top five. Ranked six through 10 were Kansas City, Mo., Washington, D.C., Dallas, Baltimore and Los Angeles.

The FBI's overall crime rate, which includes property crimes, rose by a more modest 1.4 percent, to 5,820.3 per 100,000 residents.

That increase was far smaller than that of violent crime because property crimes - burglary, larceny-theft and motor vehicle theft - comprise 87 percent of all the incidents in the FBI's crime index.