Some banks spend millions setting up stand-alone units to turn mortgages into securities. Centura Banks Inc. took a quicker and possibly less expensive route.

The Rocky Mount, N.C., banking company just purchased a large stake in First Greensboro Home Equity Corp., a company that creates its own mortgage securities. The Greensboro, N.C., lender makes the securities out of loans to people who have blemished credit records. These borrowers range from those who have missed a few loan payments to those who have a bankruptcy in their past.

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