A franchise-mortgage finance group at Lehman Brothers, which includes an origination effort based in Orlando, Fla., and a team of bankers in New York, may be dismantled - with a simultaneous redistribution of talent - according to several reliable market sources and insiders knowledgable about the developments.

It is understood that a term securitization of Lehman franchise loans has been in the works for a while, although market players have expressed discomfort with the notion that the unit may be shut down following a deal. According to insiders, Lehman has been working on the franchise deal for nearly a year, but so far to no avail.

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