Adding impetus to the sluggish economic recovery,
SunTrust Banks, Inc.
) is creating new jobs in the Charlotte area. The bank is
recruiting 60 mortgage originators and underwriters at a recently
opened loan processing and underwriting centre in the region.
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Previously, the centre had hired 40 employees. The new employees
are expected to be recruited by the end of this year. Upon
completion of the recruitment process, the sales centre will have
60 loan officers and 40 underwriters.
The loan processing and underwriting centre is equipped with a
call-centre to provide services to borrowers who desire to conduct
transactions with a mortgage lender over the telephone, rather than
visiting a bank branch and getting it done by a retail loan
Management at SunTrust believes that the current low interest rate
environment and the anticipation of a recovery in the housing
market have led to a significant increase in the bank's
mortgage-related revenue. Further, demand for auto loans as well as
small-business loans are rising.
In the first half of 2012, a substantial increase in the mortgage
production income was witnessed, which was the primary contributor
to the hike in non-interest income of the bank. Management believes
that the addition of new staff at the Charlotte centre will perk up
its mortgage lending capabilities throughout the bank's diverse
Many U.S. banks - like
Wells Fargo & Company
) - have employed a large number of mortgage-processing staff in
the recent months to exploit the wave of refinancing, which is
taking place in the current low interest rate environment. In
addition to improving the quality of service dished out to the
customers and improving the top line of the company, these
additional job creations are expected to boost the sluggishly
SunTrust currently retains a Zacks #2 Rank, which translates into a
short-term Buy rating. However, considering the fundamentals, we
maintain a long-term 'Neutral' recommendation on the shares.