ST. LOUIS - The Federal Reserves has approved the application of First Banks Inc. to acquire up to 19.99% of the voting shares of Southside Bancshares.

With $535 million of deposits, First Banks is the 10th-largest commercial banking organization in Missouri. Southside, also of St. Louis, is the 12th largest, with $507 million of deposits. First Banks, which already controls 4.99% of Southside, is to acquire the new shares as a passive investment.

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