NU Online News Service, Jan. 9, 4:53 p.m. – Conseco Inc., Carmel, Ind., may end up auctioning off its troubled consumer finance unit Feb. 28.

The company already has an agreement to sell the unit to a New York-based investment group for about $1 billion, but a U.S. Bankruptcy judge in Chicago has ruled that the company must solicit and consider higher offers.