Independence Community Bank Corp., New York, has announced that it will purchase substantially all the warehouse lines of credit issued by The Provident Bank, Jersey City, N.J.The purchase involves 19 lines with $207 million in commitments, Independence said. When it is completed, Independence will have $1.4 billion in warehouse credits outstanding to over 100 clients. According to Provident, which announced the move in its third-quarter earnings report, its management conducted a strategic review to see whether its current business lines met with the company's strategy of building and expanding customer relationships. Mortgage warehouse lending did not meet Provident's core business product criteria, and a decision was made to de-emphasize the warehouse business. Provident decreased its outstandings from $276.4 million at year-end 2002 to $215.3 million as of Sept. 30.

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