Jamie Dimon’s Long Day
By Joe Nocera
Thursday was quite the day for JPMorgan Chase and its chief executive, Jamie Dimon. In the morning, the bank agreed to pay $920 million to four regulatory bodies to settle charges that arose out of the infamous “London whale” trade of 2012, which had already cost the country’s biggest bank some $6 billion in losses. Then, in the afternoon, the Office of the Controller of the Currency – the primary regulator of federally chartered banks – and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – a relatively new regulator – announced that JPMorgan would pay fines of $80 million, plus $309 million in restitution, for selling credit card customers bogus services. That’s $1.3 billion in fines and restitution in a one day, not to mention strongly worded statements by regulators, an admission of wrongdoing by JPMorgan, and promises by a humbled Dimon to do better. “I think the key to safe and sound banking is to hold the boards and senior management accountable,” says Karen Petrou, the managing partner of Federal Financial Analytics. “This is first time of which I’m aware it’s been done.” She added, “Largely because so much else went unpunished, JPMorgan ended up holding the bag.” “But better late than never,” Petrou said.