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BoA sells 5.6B shares in Chinese bank

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(CNN) -- Bank of America has sold 5.6 billion shares, or $3 billion, of its holdings in China Construction Bank, a spokesman for the Chinese bank said Wednesday.

The transaction represents 13 percent of Bank of America's holdings in China's third-largest lender. A spokesman for China Construction Bank said the sale by BoA will not change the "strategic cooperation between the two sides."

The sale comes as banks hoard cash amid the worldwide financial crisis.

Bank of America recently completed deals to purchase broker Merrill Lynch and mortgage lender Countrywide. The company received $15 billion as part of the U.S. government's bailout of the financial industry, also known as the Troubled Assets Relief Program, or TARP.

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