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Bank of America Corp. is issuing Visa-branded prepaid cards to U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes for the 2008 Summer Olympics, Aug. 8 to 24 in Beijing, the company announced today. BofA is the official bank sponsor of the 2008 Olympic Team, and San Francisco-based Visa Inc. is the official payment-services brand. The Charlotte, N.C.-based bank plans to issue about 1,500 cards–800 to athletes and the rest to coaches and other staff, BofA spokesperson Joseph Goode tells CardLine. The U.S. Olympic Committee would load daily expense allowances for the athletes and staff directly onto the cards, Goode says. Athletes will start receiving the cards this week as they prepare to leave for Beijing, Goode says. The cards have an image of the U.S. flag and the Olympic rings, according to the bank. BofA also issued cards for the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Torino, Italy, Goode says.

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