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HSBC Closes Indirect Channels

HSBC’s mortgage unit will no longer accept business from mortgage brokers and mortgage banking correspondents. More than 300 employees are impacted by the move.

HSBC Mortgage Corp. closed its indirect lending channels, according to a statement today from spokeswoman Kate Durham. The closure was effective immediately.

Today was the last day to register a new loan, according to a senior management announcement. Registered loans must be locked by Dec. 2 and funded by Jan. 20, 2009.

“Unprecedented market conditions have made it necessary for HSBC Mortgage Corporation (USA) to cease Wholesale/Correspondent origination operations effective immediately,” the announcement stated.

The closing impacts 225 employees in Depew, N.Y., and 100 more spread across the country, Durham said. HSBC will attempt to find alternative positions inside the company whenever possible.

She explained that the mortgage unit will now focus on the retail sales channel. Loans will continue to be originated through HSBC’s 460 bank branches.

“HSBC Mortgage Corporation (USA) truly appreciates the business and support of our brokers over the years,” the announcement said. “On behalf of HSBC Mortgage Corporation (USA) we would like to thank you for the relationship we have enjoyed with you in the past and wish you the best for the future.”

In September 2007, HSBC shut down its subprime wholesale lending subsidiary, Decision One Mortgage. That closing resulted in around 750 layoffs.

HSBC reported third-quarter impairment charges on its U.S. consumer loans of $4.3 billion, rising $0.7 billion from the second quarter.

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