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Primerica Increases Stake in Home Federal S&L to 8.36%

October 16, 1987|GREG JOHNSON | Times Staff Writer

SAN DIEGO — Financial services giant Primerica has increased its ownership stake in San Diego-based Home Federal Savings & Loan to 8.36%, according to documents filed with federal regulators. The Greenwich, Conn., company previously owned slightly more than 5% of Home Federal's 21 million outstanding common shares.

In filings with the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, Primerica, formerly known as American Can Co., said it acquired the additional stock for investment purposes. The diversified financial company and its various subsidiaries have held stock since 1985 in Home Federal, which with assets of $12.8 billion, is the 11th-largest S&L in the country.

Primerica officials on Thursday declined to comment on the company's plans beyond a statement submitted to federal regulators Tuesday that it will re-examine its investment, "and depending on market conditions and other factors, may purchase or sell shares."

Analysts noted that although Primerica has acquired stakes in various companies and has transformed itself from a manufacturing business into a financial services concern, it has not, under Chairman Gerald Tsai, launched any unfriendly takeovers.

Primerica is Home Federal's third-largest shareholder. New York-based Wellington Management Co. owns 9.1% of the S&L's stock and the Windsor Fund owns another 8.4%.

A Home Fed spokeswoman said regulators still are reviewing the S&L's recent request to convert from being a federally chartered S&L into a state chartered bank, a switch that would require state and federal approval. Home Fed is considering the switch in part to escape the special assesments levied by the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp. to bolster its undercapitalized insurance fund.

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