National City Corp. reported a $622 million after-tax gain on the sale of its First Franklin subsidiary, but is still trying to unload $7.3 billion in loans made by the subprime lender before the sale. The First Franklin "run-off" portfolio cost National City $172 million in the fourth quarter and $197 million for the year, as the bank realized losses on the sale of loans or wrote down the value of those it still held. At $1.1 billion, the allowance for loan losses as of Dec. 31 represented 1.18 percent of National City's portfolio, a 15-basis-point increase from end of 2005. The sale of First Franklin to Merrill Lynch & Co. was completed on Dec. 30, National City said, although proceeds from the sale are subject to adjustment under the sale contract. National City reported fourth-quarter profits of $842 million, up 116 percent from $398 million in 2005. Profits for the year were $2.3 billion, up from $2 billion in 2005. The bank's wholesale, consumer and small-business units ...
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