Washington Mutual Inc.’s deal to buy PNC Financial Services Group Inc.’s mortgage unit would diversify its product line, geographic reach, and sources of income.

Size is also a key driver for the deal, rumors of which had circulated in the market last week. The Seattle thrift company is to pay $605 million in cash and assume considerable debt in the acquisition, which would create the industry’s second-largest originator and fourth-largest servicer, according to National Mortgage News, a sister publication of American Banker.

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