Industry News

Wachovia to exit subprime mortgage lending

Subsidiary EquiBanc has offices in 25 states

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Wachovia Corp. is closing its Marietta, Ga.-based subprime lending subsidiary EquiBanc Mortgage Corp., which has offices in 25 states and Washington, D.C. "Wachovia recently conducted an intensive strategic review of its mortgage business, which has altered the company's approach to the origination of nonconforming loans," a message on the company's Web site said. "As a result, Wachovia has elected to close EquiBanc Mortgage -- Wachovia's only business dedicated solely to nonconforming loans." According to the Web site, the lender employs 27 account executives. A Wachovia spokeswoman told Reuters that an unspecified number of employees were told of the shutdown on Jan. 17 and that loans in the pipeline must close by Jan. 31. Also on Thursday, Millennium Bankshares Corp. of Reston, Va., announced it will close its mortgage-operating subsidiaries. "We were concerned about future volatility in earnings as a result of the soft housing market and wanted to eliminate, going forward, th...