National City Corporation announced today that it has completed the sale of the First Franklin origination franchise and related servicing platform to Merrill Lynch & Co., effective Dec. 30, 2006. First Franklin is a leading originator of non-prime residential mortgage loans through a nationwide wholesale network. Under terms of the agreement, Merrill Lynch paid a $1.3 billion purchase price for the San Jose, Calif.-based First Franklin, and affiliated business units, Pittsburgh-based National City Home Loan Services and NationPoint, headquartered in Lake Forest, Calif.
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