CHICAGO - First Chicago Corp., a behemoth in Midwest corporate banking, has achieved only nominal success in the 401(k) world. But it has high hopes for a giant step forward by teaming up with Boston-based Putnam Investments, the nation's sixth-largest mutual fund company.

First Chicago, the country's 10th-largest banking company with $64.1 billion of assets, is counting on its relationships with nearly 10,000 large and midsize companies to which it can cross-sell its 401(k) plan.

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