Merrill Lynch Renews Private Label Deal with PHH Mortgage

Merrill Lynch Credit Corp. has renewed its private label production and servicing agreement with PHH Mortgage, Mt. Laurel, N.J., according to a new filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The private label relationship – where PHH funds and originates residential loans for MLCC – has been in place since 1997, said a PHH spokesman.

The relationship has continued although Merrill is now owned by Bank of America, the nation's second ranked funder of home mortgages and largest servicer.

The PHH spokesman declined to provide any details on the private label agreement between the two parties. (PHH is one of the largest private label lender/servicers in the U.S. A few years back the company was being eyed for a purchase by Countrywide Financial Corp.)

MLCC has offered origination and servicing services to clients of the investment banking firm with PHH actually doing all the work behind the scenes. The spokesman said he did not know whether the loans PHH is processing are jumbos.

PHH president Luke Hayden said in a statement, "We are pleased to continue our strategic mortgage partnership with Merrill Lynch Credit Corporation. We have provided private label mortgage origination and servicing to clients of Merrill Lynch since 1997 and we look forward to serving them in the future."