First Horizon Pulls Back on Construction Lending
First Horizon National Corp. said Monday that it will discontinue national home builder and commercial real estate lending via its First Horizon Construction Lending offices. The Memphis-based bank said the move was in-line with its plans to reduce its national real estate portfolio. Jerry Baker, First Horizon's CEO, said the company will work with First Horizon Construction Lending customers through the completion of construction projects underway. "We have a plan in place to work with our national construction lending employees and customers to make an orderly transition out of these business channels as we work to shrink our balance sheet and focus many of our resources on our First Tennessee Bank and FTN Financial capital markets businesses," said Baker. First Horizon reported a fourth quarter net loss of $248.6 million on January 18, driven in part by exposure to construction lending. The bank has said it intends to reduce its national real estate portfolio by $2 billion during 2008.