Speculation that New York Community Bancorp (NYCB) is mulling a trip out West makes surprising sense even though many banks have paid dearly for far-flung expansions in recent years.

The Westbury company headed by Joseph Ficalora is said to be courting OneWest Bank, Reuters reported last week. Big investors, including funds managed by George Soros and John Paulson, created OneWest from the IndyMac assets they bought from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. in 2009.

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