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American Express Seeking $3.5 Billion: Report

American Express, recently approved to become a bank-holding company, is looking for $3.5 billion from the federal government, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

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American Express has been hit by a slowdown in consumer spending from even its most affluent customers, the Journal said.

It was not clear if the application for money under the Troubled Asset Relief Program was made before or after the company received approval to be a bank-holding company, the paper said.

The cash would give the company more flexibility in funding its operations, the Journal reported.

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