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The (more than) 12 deals of Christmas

U.S. banks announced more than a dozen deals in the weeks leading up to Christmas, but the pace of deals in 2018 was much slower than in December 2017.

An S&P Global Market Intelligence analysis found 15 U.S. bank deals announced from Dec. 1 through Dec. 25. In the same period a year earlier, that number was 29.

Several deals announced in December 2018 had a value larger than $100 million. The largest by far was Ameris Bancorp's planned $750.7 million purchase of Atlanta-based Fidelity Southern Corp.

A number of December's deals had targets based in Georgia. On Dec. 20, Jonesboro-based CCF Holding Co. agreed to acquire two Georgia community banks — Heritage Bancorp. and Providence Bank — in a deal valued at $105.0 million.

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