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Premier Financial Climbs After Pact for Peoples Bancorp Tieup

Peoples Bancorp will pay about $292 million of stock to acquire Premier Financial.
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Shares of Premier Financial Bancorp (PFBI)  jumped Monday after the financial-services-holding company agreed to be acquired by Peoples Bancorp  (PEBO)  for stock valued at about $292 million.

Under the terms, Peoples Bancorp, Marietta, Ohio, will swap 0.58 share for each share of Premier Financial, based in Huntington, W.Va. That's based on Peoples' 20-day volume-weighted-average closing price of $33.95 a share.

Premier Financial is the parent of Premier Bank and Citizens Deposit Bank & Trust.

Premier Financial shares at last check jumped 3.9% to $18.63 while Peoples Bancorp fell 3.4% to $32.70. 

The shares of Premier have traded on Monday at as much as a 52-week high $19. A bit less than a year ago they set a 52-week low just above $10.

"Premier's strong core franchise provides a natural extension of our existing markets, as well as entry into attractive markets within Virginia, Maryland and Washington," Peoples Chief Executive Chuck Sulerzyski said in a statement.

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At closing, the combined company would have $6.7 billion in assets, $4.6 billion in loans and $5.5 billion in deposits with 136 locations in Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

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Both companies' boards have approved the deal, which they expect to be tax-free to holders of Premier Financial. 

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter, subject to conditions including regulatory clearances and votes by shareholders of both companies.

Peoples was advised by Raymond James and Premier by Piper Sandler.