Covest Bancshares has sold its $11 million credit card portfolio to Banco Popular. The portfolio at the $581 million-asset Covest had shrunk by a third in recent years, and "competition from the giants in the credit card industry has resulted in decreased profits," said chief financial officer Paul A. Larsen.

R. Kennedy Alger, Covest executive vice president, said proceeds from the sale will "support growth opportunities in the retail and commercial lending departments."

Loan Trade Inc. of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., handled the transaction.

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