Guaranty Financial Group Inc. in Austin, Tex., has sold its wholly owned insurance subsidiary to JLT Insurance Agency Holdings Inc. for about $40 million.

The $15 billion-asset Guaranty said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Friday that "the sale will allow the company to reduce costs and to focus on its core businesses in retail and commercial banking."

Cost-cutting has been a top priority for Guaranty, which lost roughly $257 million in the first nine months of 2008 and has yet to report a profitable quarter since it was spun off from Temple-Inland Inc. in late 2007.

In December, the company announced it would reduce its workforce by 250 employees, or 10%, after eliminating 135 jobs earlier in the year.

Guaranty also raised $600 million of fresh capital in July.

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