WAYNE, N.J. - Valley National Bank has agreed to sell its cobranded ShopRite MasterCard credit card portfolio to American Express Co.

The portfolio has 230,000 cards and $70 million of receivables. "The cobranded business line was not in our long-term strategic interest," explained John Harris, a spokesman for Valley National. "We will remain a Visa and MasterCard issuer with a small portfolio to service our clients needs."

The transaction with American Express is expected to close in the first quarter of 2001. ShopRite customers will still be able to use their cards in the meantime, and will get information about the transition.

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