MetLife Warehouse Group May Stay with Insurer

MetLife is continuing to stonewall on the future of its $1 billion warehouse lending business, leading to speculation in the market that the insurance company may wind up keeping the business after all.

According to warehouse executives and advisors who have been in contact with the company about the issue, a sale of MetLife Home Loans’ retail, correspondent and warehouse businesses fell apart in early December.

The buyer of these three units was said to be a large bank that already had a presence in residential finance but not warehouse.

One executive said he was told by managers in MetLife’s warehouse group that the insurance company’s capital markets group was conducting due diligence on the warehouse division just a few weeks ago. “The warehouse guys there were optimistic that this would happen,” said this source.

At yearend, MetLife had almost $1 billion in commitments to nonbanks.

At press time telephone calls to various MetLife officials and press contacts had not been returned.

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