In recent earnings calls, several top bank officials said price disputes between buyers and sellers could keep the pace of merger-and-acquisition activity slow this year. "People are still, it seems, very much in a waiting stage," said BB&T Chairman and CEO Kelly King. Sellers "want to see their [share] prices go back up to what they think they might get to." So far this year, banks have announced 43 deals, the same as this time last year.

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