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Banco Popular Is in Talks to Sell Internet Banking Business

Banco Popular Espanol SA, a Spanish lender under pressure to comply with a government order to recognize real estate losses, is in talks to sell majority stakes in its internet bank and bank-cards businesses.

No agreement has been reached on any sale, the Madrid-based bank said today in a filing to regulators. Expansion newspaper today reported that Popular could earn 2 billion euros ($2.5 billion) of gains from the sale of the internet bank.

Popular said on May 14 that the impact of the latest real estate clean-up ordered by the government would cost it 1.7 billion euros in additional provisions. The bank said that potential transactions announced today would help it generate “reasonable results” over the next two years and that it plans further steps to raise funds.

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