CHARLOTTE, N.C. — First Union Corp. said it will eliminate 40 banking positions in its corporate banking unit.

The banking company, in the midst of an organizationwide restructuring, now has 98 corporate bankers, divided up by region. The winnowed-down 58 after the cutbacks will be divided into 13 industry groups and will target companies with sales of at least $250 million.

The aim is more-profitable customers, First Union spokeswoman Ginny Mackin told American Banker on Thursday. The plan was announced within the company Wednesday.

“We are aligning our bankers [to focus] on those areas where we have a competitive advantage, such as technology and telecom,” Ms. Mackin said.

Some of the corporate bankers whose positions are to be eliminated will be reassigned within company, she said.

Ms. Mackin confirmed that on Wednesday, First Union internally announced similar changes for its underwriting and risk management groups. She would not discuss those changes or how many jobs would be cut.

First Union, the nation’s sixth-largest bank holding company, with assets of $247 billion, has spent the past few months restructuring. It has laid off employees, sold its credit card business, and stopped originating loans through its Money Store Unit.

The company’s stock rose Thursday 43.75 cents to close at $30.9375.

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