OneWest Counts 65 in Financial Freedom Layoffs

OneWest Bank laid off 65 employees last week at its Financial Freedom offices in Irvine, California, the company told the Orange County Register today. The layoffs took place on May 26 and have been completed, according to OneWest.

The layoffs come following OneWest’s decision to close down Financial Freedom and exit the reverse mortgage business, a move the company announced on March 21.

Financial Freedom, which formerly operated a wholesale reverse mortgage origination channel as well as a retail channel, was the seventh largest lender in 2010, but saw volume decline 78.5% from 2009 on the wholesale side, and a 71% drop in its retail reverse mortgage business last year. OneWest acquired the company as part of an IndyMac acquisition in 2009.

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At the time of its departure, CEO Michelle Minier told the company that OneWest had decided to leave the reverse mortgage business based on the regulatory environment and an aim to focus on the bank’s core businesses.

The Financial Freedom layoffs accompany job losses in other Irvine-area banks including Wells Fargo and State Street Bank and Trust Co., according to the Orange County Register Report.

View the Orange County Register report.

Written by Elizabeth Ecker