Huntington to buy FirstMerit creating largest bank in Ohio

AP News
Posted: Jan 26, 2016 9:32 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — Huntington Bancshares said Tuesday that it will pay about $3.4 billion to buy rival FirstMerit, creating the largest bank in Ohio.

Columbus, Ohio-based Huntington has more than 750 bank branches in Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. FirstMerit, headquartered in Akron, Ohio, has nearly 370 branches in Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The combined company will have nearly $100 billion in assets and operate in eight states.

FirstMerit will change its name to Huntington when the deal closes, said Huntington spokesman Brent Wilder said.

Under the terms of the deal, FirstMerit shareholders will receive 1.72 shares of Huntington stock and $5 in cash for each FirstMerit share they own. Based on Huntington's closing price on Monday, FirstMerit shareholders would receive $20.14 for each share they own.

The deal is expected to close in the third quarter, the companies said.

Shares of Huntington Bancshares Inc. fell 6.3 percent to $8.25 before the stock market opened Tuesday. Shares of FirstMerit Corp. jumped 20 percent to $18.45.