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Huntington To Help Places Harmed By FirstMerit Acquisition

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Columbus-based Huntington Bancshares says it will invest more than 16 billion dollars into communities impacted by its purchase of Akron-based FirstMerit, which will result in the closing of more than one hundred branches.The merger drew protests from hundreds of municipal governments and religious and community organizations.  Huntington spokesperson Brent Wilder describes how the bank will focus the spending in low-to-moderate income areas over the next five-years.

“So you’re seeing billions of dollars allocated to single-family mortgage lending, you’re seeing it going into small business lending, to community development lending and investment. And also some additional philanthropic and economic investment efforts.”

Wilder says Huntington will also build ten new branches…including three in Cleveland.Cleveland-based Key-Corp has announced a similar community investment program following its planned purchase of First Niagara Bank of New York . 

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