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Leading Independent Proxy Advisory Firms ISS, Glass Lewis And Egan-Jones Recommend Sterling Bancorp Shareholders Vote FOR Proposed Merger With Provident New York Bancorp

NEW YORK, Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sterling Bancorp (NYSE: STL; "Sterling" or "the Company"), the parent company of Sterling National Bank, today announced that three leading independent proxy voting advisory firms, Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), Glass Lewis & Co. and Egan-Jones Proxy Services, have recommended that Sterling shareholders vote "FOR" Sterling's proposed merger with Provident New York Bancorp.

As previously announced on April 4, 2013, Sterling Bancorp and Provident New York Bancorp (NYSE: PBNY) entered into a definitive merger agreement in a stock-for-stock transaction. The merger is expected to close in the fourth calendar quarter of 2013, subject to approval by the shareholders of both companies, regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions.

The Sterling Board of Directors recommends that the Company's shareholders vote "FOR" the merger proposal. Each shareholder's vote is important. All Sterling shareholders of record at August 12, 2013 are encouraged to vote by internet, telephone or mail. Shareholders who have any questions about voting should contact Georgeson Inc. at (800) 509-0957.

Approval of the merger will be voted upon at the Company's annual meeting of shareholders, to be held on Thursday, September 26, 2013, at 10:00 A.M. Eastern Time at 3 West 51st Street, New York, New York 10019. Sterling Bancorp shareholders of record will be entitled to vote at the meeting.

About Sterling Bancorp Sterling Bancorp (NYSE: STL) is a New York City-based financial corporation with assets of $2.7 billion

Forward Looking Statements The information presented herein contains forward looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 giving Sterling Bancorp's expectations or predictions of future financial or business performance or conditions. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "target," "estimate," "continue," "positions," "prospects" or "potential," by future conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could" or "may", or by variations of such words or by similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties which change over time. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made and we assume no duty to update forward-looking statements.

In addition to factors previously disclosed in Provident's and Sterling's  reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the following factors among others, could cause actual results to differ materially from forward-looking statements: ability to obtain regulatory approvals and meet other closing conditions to the merger, including approval by Provident and Sterling shareholders, on the expected terms and schedule; delay in closing the merger; difficulties and delays in integrating the Provident and Sterling businesses or fully realizing cost savings and other benefits; business disruption following the proposed transaction; changes in asset quality and credit risk; the inability to sustain revenue and earnings growth; changes in interest rates and capital markets; inflation; customer borrowing, repayment, investment and deposit practices; customer disintermediation; the introduction, withdrawal, success and timing of business initiatives; competitive conditions; the inability to realize cost savings or revenues or to implement integration plans and other consequences associated with mergers, acquisitions and divestitures; economic conditions; changes in Provident's stock price before closing, including as a result of the financial performance of Sterling prior to closing; the reaction to the transaction of the companies' customers, employees and counterparties;and the impact, extent and timing of technological changes, capital management activities, and other actions of the Federal Reserve Board and legislative and regulatory actions and reforms.

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