Champion Mortage's portfolio acquired by once shady lender

A nightmare for homeowners everywhere might be in the near future as HSBC Finance Corporation bought Champion Mortage’s portfolio recently. You may remember HSBC Finance by their old name – Household International – and the nation’s largest predatory lending settlement. Or perhaps you recognize the from racketeering charges with their high interest rate tax loan partner H&R Block. No doubt this new deal will be bad for consumers.

KeyCorp, a large Midwest US bank, on Friday said it agreed to sell its Champion Mortgage subprime lending unit to Britain’s HSBC Holdings Plc and investment firm Fortress Investment Group LLC, so it can focus on consumer and business banking.Terms were not disclosed. A unit of HSBC Finance Corp. acquired Champion’s $2.5 billion loan portfolio, which contains mortgages of about 30,000 customers, while Fortress will buy Champion’s origination platform.

“Champion’s loan portfolio is a very good fit for HSBC’s consumer lending business,” said Tom Detelich, president of HSBC Finance’s consumer lending unit. The unit has 1,350 branches in 46 US states, and operates under the HFC and Beneficial names.

Amid red ink and losses H&R Block considers selling their sub-prime mortgage business. Champion dumped theirs, and HSBC Finance Corporation is buying. Could it be that HSBC Finance thinks they are above the law, protected by the OCC, or simply nastier and more ruthless than the rest? Time will tell.

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