Wachovia Corp. said it will open five supermarket branches this year in Harris Teeter grocery stores in the Atlanta area.

The $47 billion-asset bank said these would be its first supermarket branches.

The locations are part of a multiyear deal between the bank and grocery store chain to open an undisclosed number of supermarket branches in Atlanta.

Wachovia plans to use the branches to handle account transactions, approve loans, and sell financial products.

Last year, banks across the country opened more than 1,200 full-service supermarket branches, bringing the total number of in-store branches to nearly 4,400, Wachovia said.

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