Bank of America plans to jettison Countrywide

Bank of America Corp. plans to jettison another piece of the troubled Countrywide mortgage empire — a lending arm that buys home loans from smaller institutions to then package into mortgage-backed securities on Wall Street.

The beleaguered banking giant has shopped the business around and is in serious talks with one potential acquirer, according to spokesman Dan Frahm. If it can’t strike a deal, Bank of America would shut down the business, jeopardizing 1,400 jobs, including 700 in Westlake Village and Thousand Oaks.