Synovus Financial Corp. said it plans to cut 850 positions and close branches in 2011, as the Georgia-based bank continues to pare its operations to cut costs.

The latest round of cuts follows the bank reducing its workforce by more than 300 positions last year. The company has posted eight straight quarterly losses as big bets on once-hot housing and commercial property have soured. Nevertheless, it has recently said its loan books were improving and in October reported its third-quarter loss narrowed as it set aside much less to cover loan losses amid improving credit metrics.

Synovus said Monday it plans to close 39 branches in the first half of the year. The branches represent less than 1% of its outstanding loans and 4% of total deposits.

It expects the plans to generate $100 million in annual savings by the end of 2012, and expects to post $28 million in restructuring charges related to the moves, including $24 million during the first quarter.

Shares closed Friday at $2.55 and were inactive premarket.

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