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Home Depot drops plan to acquire bank

Customers arrive outside a Home Depot store in a suburb of Denver, Colorado May 17, 2005. Home Depot Inc has scrapped a plan to buy a bank as it focuses on shoring up its retail business. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Home improvement retailer Home Depot Inc HD.N has scrapped a plan to buy a bank as it focuses on shoring up its retail business.

The company in 2006 had announced plans to buy EnerBank USA, a Utah loan provider, from CMS Energy Corp CMS.N.

“Earlier this week, we informed EnerBank that we no longer intend to acquire the company,” Home Depot spokesman Ron DeFeo said on Friday.

“This acquisition is no longer a part of our strategy and we are turning our attention to our core retail business,” he added.

The decision comes as the clock winds down this month on a bank industry-backed moratorium to keep retailers out of banking.

Wal-Mart Stores WMT.N withdrew its request to open a specialty bank last March after immense opposition from politicians, consumer groups and community banks.

Reporting by Karen Jacobs; Editing by Phil Berlowitz

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