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GE Cuts Most Mortgage Staff

All loan processors, officers and underwriters have left the WMC unit, sources say.

General Electric's

(GE) - Get Report

crippled subprime mortgage business, WMC Mortgage, laid off most of its workers on Monday afternoon,

has learned.

All loan processors, underwriters and loan officers have left the business. A customer service operator at the lender said it's still operating with a "skeleton crew."

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"They're working the pipeline that is here," said the operator. "They are taking originations, but we're down to minimal staff levels as of yesterday afternoon."

GE announced that it was exiting the business over the summer, when the U.S. subprime mortgage fiasco caused a meltdown in the global credit markets.

The conglomerate said in September that it had roughly $1 billion in mortgage assets on its books and it was "aggressively" trying to sell WMC.

GE spokesman Russell Wilkerson says there's still a "decent number of employees" at WMC and it still has loans on its books.

"We're in the process of selling it," says Wilkerson.

But with the layoffs, WMC may simply be dying a slow death. Jack De Gan, a money manager with Harbor Advisory, says there's essentially no value at WMC anymore, and whatever GE does with it will not affect the stock at this point.

Shares of GE recently were down 3 cents, or 0.1%, to $40.53.