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struck an agreement to sell its network of automatic-teller machines for $106 million.

The online brokerage will sell the network to privately held Cardtronics of Houston and record a $55 million gain on the transaction when it closes. E*Trade will retain branding rights through Cardtronics, which is an independent "deployer" of ATMs for third-party customers.

"While we believe that the ATM network is an important distribution channel for our customers, we have determined that operating an ATM network is not essential to providing this customer benefit," E*Trade said. The company vowed to continue providing surcharge-free ATM access by refunding to clients ATM fees imposed by machines anywhere in the world.

E*Trade has been in the ATM business for about four years and operates close to 15,000 machines worldwide.