HELENA, Mont. -

The parent company of American Federal Savings Bank has announced the Comptroller of the Currency has approved its purchase of the seven Sterling Savings Bank locations in Montana.

The transaction will expand the franchise of Eagle Bancorp Montana Inc. to 13 branches. Eagle is purchasing two Sterling branches in Missoula along with branches in Billings, Big Timber, Livingston, Bozeman and Hamilton. American Federal has three branches in Helena and one each in Bozeman, Butte and Townsend.

Under the transaction, Eagle will acquire $187 million in deposits and $44 million in loans.

Eagle President and CEO Peter J. Johnson said Monday the acquisition will make Eagle Bancorp the sixth largest bank in the state, with total deposits of over $400 million.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of November.