WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — BB&T Corp. said Thursday that it plans a new buyback program in which it will repurchase up to 20 million shares of common stock to help fund acquisitions.

The $56.7 billion-asset company said that it has almost completed a buyback begun in April 1999. That program, a repurchase of 10 million shares, was also used for acquisitions, the company said.

BB&T has been aggressive in the past decade, gobbling up 47 thrift companies, 46 insurance agencies, and 13 nonbanking companies. It completed the purchase of One Valley Bancorp in West Virginia in the third quarter.

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