Chase Keeps Selective Warehouse Presence

JP Morgan Chase (JPM) recently reversed a decision to shutter its warehouse lending division entirely. The bank said months ago it would close the warehouse unit purchased from Washington Mutual. “Chase bought WaMu’s warehouse lending business last spring,” a company spokesperson told HousingWire in February ’08. “We decided it didn’t fit our long-term strategy.” That decision seems to have changed, as the same spokesperson tells HW in an interview today that Chase will keep the warehouse business, move it to the commercial banking segment and extend lines of credit to a “very select” group of customers. The lender will continue to conduct warehouse business with a subset of the 10 customers associated with WaMu’s unit, according to a report filed Monday by National Mortgage News. The decision comes as many retail lenders have either cut back on their warehouse presence or retreated from the space. A Wells Fargo (WFC) spokesperson recently told HW reports that it plans to launch a $4bn warehouse facility were accurate, signaling at least one major lender’s intention to return to the space. HousingWire looks in detail at the changing warehouse lending landscape in the upcoming June magazine issue. Write to Diana Golobay. Disclosure: The author held no relevant investment positions when this story was published. Indirect holdings may exist via mutual fund investments.

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