BB&T Corp.'s Liberty Mortgage Corp. is exiting the wholesale channel, a move that will lead to the banking company ramping up its correspondent and warehouse lending divisions.

Late Wednesday, a BB&T spokeswoman called the change a realignment of its "resources" that will bolster the warehouse unit that the Winston-Salem, N.C., company inherited when it bought the failed Colonial Bank in Montgomery, Ala., last year. "We believe that now is the time to focus on growing that business," she said.

BB&T ranks ninth among correspondent funders, according to figures compiled by National Mortgage News' Quarterly Data Report.

Liberty will honor wholesale loan commitments as long as the mortgage closes before Aug. 1. "There will be no extensions beyond July 31," an internal memo said.

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