The home loan unit of Prudential Insurance Company of America is planning a fresh round of big layoffs.

The unit, which cut about 600 jobs earlier this year, is now planning to slash another 1,000, according a memo sent to employees last week. The cuts will leave a staff of about 3,000.

The memo cites predictions that industrywide loan volume will drop 40% this year. That's double the decline that most analysts were predicting at the beginning of the year.

More Cuts Seen at Countrywide

"This new reality requires us to redefine our business focus and organizational structure," the memo said.

Prudential's plans come on the heels of reports that Countrywide Credit Industries is preparing to cut about 800 jobs, or more than 20% of its staff. Countrywide, the nation's largest mortgage lender, eliminated about 1,000 positions earlier this year.

The Prudential unit is Residential Services Corporation of America, which encompasses several mortgage-related businesses. The main one is St. Louis-based Prudential Home Mortgage, the largest mortgage originator after Countrywide.

A spokesman for Residential Services said the company had not yet decided exactly where the cuts would be made.

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