Stephen Skerrett has left his position as head of Greenwich NatWest's securitization business in the U.K. and Europe, according to sources familiar with the matter. His departure follows four other fixed-income derivatives directors who left the company for Lehman Brothers. There is no word as to Skerrett's new employer.

Nicholas Hyde has been hired by Salomon Smith Barney to head its international fixed-income sales team. Hyde came to SSB from J.P. Morgan & Co., where he had been vice president of sales for international fixed-income for the past two years. SSB has plans to expand its international fixed-income sales team over time.

Michael Herskovitz has recently joined Andrew Davidson & Co., a New York-based fixed income analytics company. At Andrew Davidson, he will expand the firm's capabilities in technology consulting and work with clients on new Internet technologies and risk management systems. Herskovitz was most recently the international chief information officer for Morgan Stanley Dean Witter in London.

Freddie Mac has announced that through its Affordable Merit Rate Mortgage program, a borrower has four years to make 24 consecutive payments to qualify for a 1% interest-rate reduction.

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