NU Online News Service, Jan. 13, 2004, 1:25 p.m. EST – Sterling Financial Corp., Lancaster, Pa., has agreed to acquire Stoudt Advisors, Lancaster, a company that sells employee benefits and stop-loss coverage to large and midsize employers in central Pennsylvania.[@@]

The price of the deal was not immediately available. Sterling, a banking and investment services holding company, says it hopes to complete the acquisition by March 31.

Kenneth Stoudt, the founder and chief executive of Stoudt Advisors, and David Stoudt, the president of the firm, will continue to work for the firm after the deal is completed, Sterling says.