WASHINGTON -- The Federal Reserve Board has approved a proposal by Norwest Corp. to acquire Ralston Bancshares Inc. of Omaha.

Norwest's Nebraska affiliate would remain third largest in the state after the merger, the Fed said.

The Minneapolis-based parent has about 48 billion of assets and 86 banking subsidiaries in 13 states.

Ralston is the 35th-largest bank in Nebraska, with $83 million of deposits.

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