The Federal Reserve Board gave National City Corp. permission Wednesday to acquire First of America Bank Corp.
The $6.8 billion deal will create a $74.4 billion-asset banking company with nearly 1,500 offices in six states. To satisfy antitrust concerns, Cleveland-based National City agreed to divest two branches in Anderson, Ind.
The Fed rejected a Community Reinvestment Act protest by the Chicago- based Woodstock Institute, noting that National City's lead bank was graded "outstanding" on its latest exam.
Shareholders of National City and First of America, based in Kalamazoo, Mich., are expected to meet separately on March 30 to approve the deal, spokesmen for the two banking companies said.
National City also is awaiting Fed approval to acquire Fort Wayne (Ind.) National Corp. Both deals are expected to close in the second quarter.