Mortgage company changes its mind, proposes to send 250 jobs to India

February 29, 2004|By Mary Umberger | Mary Umberger,CHICAGO TRIBUNE

As the outsourcing of American jobs to other countries turns into a political minefield, a major participant in the mortgage business says he has changed his mind on the topic. He's going in, not out.

And he's probably going to have a lot of company.

Angelo R. Mozilo, chairman and chief executive officer of Countrywide Financial Corp., told an industry gathering in New York that his company's mortgage operation intends to open a 250-employee call center in India this year. A few months ago, Mozilo told a mortgage industry trade journal that his company wouldn't do that.

"I feel it is the responsibility of Countrywide to create jobs in the U.S., not outside the U.S.," Mozilo told Mortgage Servicing News. "To buy a home, you need a job. It's a conflict for me."

Countrywide spokesman Rick Simon said the plans for India are far from complete and that the company hadn't decided whether the employees there would handle customer-service calls, process applications or perform other duties. He said Countrywide might even change its mind again.

"It will come down to what's good for the customers and what's good for the shareholders," Simon said.

The Chicago Tribune is a Tribune Publishing Newspaper.

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