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Loan book at Brazil's Caixa rose 36.8 percent last year -source

SAO PAULO, Feb 25 (Reuters) - Brazilian state-run lender Caixa Econômica Federal SA, Brazil's biggest mortgage lender, expanded lending by 36.8 percent in 2013, a source with direct knowledge of the situation said late on Tuesday.

Such expansion helped the loan book of Brasilia-based Caixa reach a number close to 500 billion reais ($216 billion) at the end of last year, said the source, who declined to be identified because the matter is private. At that level, Caixa became Brazil's second-biggest lender by the size of its loan book, leapfrogging private-sector lender Itaú Unibanco Holding SA .

The lender expanded its loan book about 42 percent in 2012.