Synovus Financial Corp. shares fell 12% Thursday after the company completed a bigger-than-expected common stock offering.

Synovus said it had sold 150 million shares at $4 a share, for $600 million in proceeds. Two days earlier, the $34 billion-asset Columbus, Ga., banking company said it expected to sell $350 million in stock.

The sale was part of a broader plan to raise capital levels by $500 million. With the added stock sold, the capital target could rise to $700 million.

Robert Patten, an analyst at Regions Financial Corp.'s Morgan Keegan & Co. Inc., wrote in a note that the increase would create further dilution for investors but that it "was a prudent move, given the favorable pricing … allowing management increased flexibility to accelerate" a strategy for shedding bad loans.

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