The No. 2 executive at Countrywide's servicing brokerage business has left to join a rival company.
Raymond Dinius, who had worked at Countrywide Servicing Exchange for eight years, started last week at Miami-based Bayview Financial Trading Group as a managing director.
Countrywide Servicing Exchange is a division of Countrywide Capital Markets, a subsidiary of Countrywide Credit Industries, the second-largest originator and servicer of mortgage loans.
Some servicing brokers said Countrywide has deemphasized its brokerage business in recent years, but David Sambol, Countrywide Servicing Exchange's president and chief executive officer, denied it. "The servicing brokerage firm still is one of our primary business lines," Mr. Sambol said.
Countrywide Servicing Exchange handles more transactions than other brokers, but the deals are generally not as large as those brokered by such investment boutiques as Bayview and Cohane Rafferty Securities.
Mr. Sambol said that, because of consolidation in the mortgage servicing business in recent years, a smaller pool of prospective customers exists for servicing brokers.
Other brokers admitted that the business of brokering servicing packages is not a growth industry. As a result many brokers, including Countrywide, have expanded into other businesses to hold onto clients.
"Each of our competitors has similarly sought to diversify as the servicing market has shrunk," Mr. Sambol said.
Accounting changes enacted in the last two years have made it more important for mortgage servicers to hedge their assets. Servicers have to book purchased servicing rights as well as servicing of loans they originated.
Many servicing brokers have been bulking up their advisory capabilities as servicers seek the best financial instruments to buy for hedging their portfolios.
Countrywide has introduced hedging and risk mitigation products. The Countrywide Capital Markets division also trades whole loans and mortgage- backed securities.
"Our focus over the last couple of years has been on broadening our mortgage-related advisory services to our financial institution customer base," Mr. Sambol said.
The hiring of Mr. Dinius to head a new Los Angeles office gives Bayview a chance to do more servicing business on the West Coast.
Mr. Dinius "has a wealth of experience, extraordinary knowledge of the industry, and valuable long-standing industry relationships," said David Ertel, a managing director of Bayview.
Bayview will also open an office in New York next month to expand its analytics and hedging businesses.