PNC's Atlanta branch deal underscores how wary acquisition-hungry banks are as they bulk up in a slow and risky market.

The Pittsburgh bank said Tuesday that it had agreed to buy 27 Atlanta branches from Flagstar Bancorp Inc. for $42 million. It was PNC's third deal for a spinoff this year. Last month it agreed to buy Royal Bank of Canada's U.S. retail bank and closed its purchase of 19 Florida branches from BankAtlantic Bancorp.

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