The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. hopes to complete a deal to sell a majority of IndyMac Federal Bank in December, according to an agency spokesman.

"Our intent is to sell as much of it as possible to one buyer," the spokesman said. It's unclear that if sold, what will happen to the FDIC's loan modification efforts at the thrift.

One source said he expected continuation of the loan-mod program to be a pre-condition of a sale. An investment banking source familiar with the transaction said at least two parties are involved in the latest round of bidding for the Pasadena, Calif.-based thrift, once a top player in the Alt-A market.

The investment banker described the parties as "consortium bids" that have syndicated out their financing. He said there is one lead negotiator for each consortium. The FDIC spokesman declined to discuss the bidding process except to say, "We'll be conducting bidding later this month."

The FDIC placed IndyMac into a conservatorship this past summer. The company was formed two decades ago by Countrywide Financial founder Angelo Mozilo.

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