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plans to shrink its wholesale-mortgage business, according to published reports.

Under a downsizing plan announced internally on Tuesday, Citigroup said it will reduce the number of outside mortgage brokers it does business with around the U.S. to 1,000 from about 9,500, the

Wall Street Journal

reports, citing a person familiar with the matter. Citigroup also will lay off about 500 sales and operations employees in its CitiMortgage division.

The job cuts, mostly sales and support positions, will be completed early next year, a spokesman said,


reports. The cuts represent about 5% of all employees in Citigroup's mortgage operations.

The job cuts in the wholesale mortgage business will be made "across the country," the spokesman said, with remaining operations based in St. Louis and Dallas,



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