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Barclays buys Citi unit

Barclays yesterday announced that it had reached agreement with Wall Street bank Citigroup to buy the US firm’s Portuguese credit card business, as it prepares for a Western European spending spree. The transaction, believed to be worth around £50m, will see Barclays take on around 400,000 credit card accounts, with gross assets of approximately €644m as of the end of June, as well as the unit’s employees, who will be folded into Barclays Portugal. Barclays is also plotting a bid for the banking operations of Standard Life, valued at up to £300m.