Countrywide Financial Corp., Calabasas, Calif., the nation's largest residential lender, has confirmed that it will cut up to 10% of its "general and administrative" work force in the coming months.A Countrywide spokesman confirmed the job cuts to MortgageWire but could not offer a head count for the reduction. Layoffs have already begun, he said. Countrywide employs about 56,000 nationwide. He stressed that the layoffs -- which the company hopes to achieve mostly through attrition -- will not affect the lender's sales staff. One source told MW that the company has even canceled its regular practice of providing employees with free doughnuts on the last Friday of every month. (For further details, see the Sept. 25 issue of National Mortgage News.)

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