To the Editor:
I am writing to express concern over your publication's Aug. 9 article about BankAmerica's decision to close a mortgage lending unit ("Start of a Mass Retreat? BankAmerica Pulls Back from Subprimes.") We take issue with several of the story's assertions and would appreciate an opportunity to set the record straight.
First, our consumer finance subsidiary - Security Pacific Financial Services - continues to lend directly to customers through its nationwide branch system. We are fully committed to meeting the financial needs of this market.
Second, it is true that we recently closed an indirect mortgage lending unit. However, this unit was not involved in subprime lending. Consequently, its closure does not represent a "pulling back" from the subprime mortgage market as the article asserted.
Third, your article cites an unnamed source in contending that a high rate of default was behind BankAmerica's decision to "pull out." That, too, is incorrect. Our decision to close the unit was based on strategy, not default rates. This unit accounted for less than 0.5% of Security Pacific's business volume and was not involved in direct lending. We concluded some time ago that its line of business did not fit within our strategy of lending directly to customers through Security Pacific's retail branch system.
Faye Wilson, chairman and president
Security Pacific Financial Services Inc.