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First American buys Interthinx

Behold the power of mortgage data

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The second largest title insurer in the United States is buying a well-regarded mortgage data firm in order to boost its analytical power.

The seller, on the other hand, is focusing on other industries more closely aligned with its strategy.

First American Financial (FAF) will purchase Interthinx from Verisk Analytics (VRSK) for $155 million.

Interthinx will help First American offer real estate customers "further assurances in areas that present risk, including fraud, identity and income validation, collateral adequacy and compliance," according to Dennis Gilmore, chief executive officer of the insurer.

Verisk decided to sell Interthinx in order to focus on the health care and credit card industries, the company said in a separate statement.

Bank of America Corp. is assisting First American, which got legal advice from McGuireWoods.

Verisk is using Morgan Stanley and McCarter & English.

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