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) --

Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria


's Venezuelan unit is not up for sale.

According to a report by

The Wall Street Journal

and the ,

bank's website,

BBVA Banco Provincial is denying claims that it is being put up for sale for $2 billion.

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The report that the bank was for sale came from journalist Jose Vicente Rangel, a friend of President Hugo Chavez, according to published reports.

--Written by Maria Woehr in New York.

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