Life can look tough for community banks in the credit card business.

The 10 largest card issuers control 70% of card receivables, up from 55% three years ago. Visa U.S.A. and MasterCard International say they are enhancing services for large banks, but resources for smaller banks probably will remain the same. Mid-tier issuers are selling their card portfolios right and left, saying they lack the scale to turn profits with the product.

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