DES MOINES — Wells Fargo Financial Leasing Inc., a subsidiary of Wells Fargo Financial Inc., said Monday that it had agreed to buy a substantial portion of the assets of Conseco Finance Vendor Services Corp., a subsidiary of Conseco Finance Corp. of Saint Paul.

Under the agreement, Wells Fargo Financial Leasing — which provides leasing to manufacturers, distributors, and vendors — will get about $1.2 billion of owned and managed lease receivables. Terms of the deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter, were not disclosed.

The announcement may provide some respite for the embattled Conseco Finance — formerly Green Tree Financial Corp. — and its parent, Conseco Inc. Since acquiring Green Tree Financial in April 1998, the Carmel, Ind.-based Conseco has seen its stock price plummet by as much as 90%. Two key executives — Stephen C. Hilbert, Conseco’s founder, chairman, and chief executive, and Rollin M. Dick, its chief financial officer —resigned after being unable to pull the company out of its tailspin. Conseco’s stock traded at $9.1875 Monday, up 7% from Friday’s close and 100% from its 52-week low of $4.50.

The deal is not the first between the two companies: In July, Conseco Finance sold its $400 million Visa and MasterCard portfolio to Wells Fargo Financial Bank.

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