He said he was going to quit if stripped of the chairman role, and god damn it, he meant it but luckily: 1. It did not come to that and 2. He got distracted watching that Harlem Shake video Lloyd sent him and fell down a rabbit’s hole of different versions on YouTube, waking up this morning with his face on the keyboard and an email that began “I believe it was John Pierpont Morgan who famously said, ‘You can all go fuck yourselves’” saved to drafts. Read more »
Jamie Dimon Pretty Happy He Didn’t Fire Off That Resignation Letter Last Night After His Second Bottle Of WineBy Bess Levin
“’They’re jealous,’” former Bear Stearns CEO Jimmy Cayne says about Dimon’s critics, in a rare interview since JPMorgan bought the foundering investment bank in March 2008. “’They’re looking at themselves as being unfortunate and being underpaid and being underappreciated, and if there’s a piñata out there to take a swipe at, who better than somebody who’s got everything that they don’t?’” [BusinessWeek]
JPMorgan Shareholders Will Find Out If Jamie Dimon’s Gonna Stay Chairman When Jamie Dimon Decides To Tell Them, Okay?By Matt Levine
Following the appeals of activist investors, shareholders of office landlord CommonWealth REIT on Tuesday forced the resignation of a trustee on the company’s board, Joseph Morea, by failing to give him a majority of votes.
The rest of the board didn’t need to look far for a replacement. On Wednesday, the board announced it had voted Morea right back into his old seat.
Morea lost a binding shareholder vote on whether he could keep his job – “CommonWealth’s bylaws require directors to resign if they don’t get a majority” – and the board told the shareholders to go fuck themselves.1
The sense I’m getting is that Jamie Dimon is going to win his can-he-still-be-chairman vote, which I find a little disappointing – not because I want him to stop being chairman, but because the truly Dimonesque move here would be to lose the vote and stay chairman anyway. “Think I’m too unconstrained? I’ll show you unconstrained!” etc. It would fit well with this: Read more »
- if a majority of shareholders vote in favor of the nonbinding proposal to strip him of his role as chairman of the board, and
- he remains chairman of the board, then
- he’s probably too powerful!
Let’s find out!
Honestly, who cares who cares who cares who cares if JPMorgan’s board has an independent Chairman or just an independent Presiding Director? The board’s job is to keep an eye on Jamie; if it failed to do that then giving it a fancy new title doesn’t seem likely to improve performance. Is it your impression that Jamie Dimon, who apparently rides roughshod over pissant Presiding Directors,1 will nonetheless be meek and subservient when faced with a Chairman?
Discussion about this proposal is confused because some people think that having an independent chairman is a good thing in all circumstances, or at least say they do; CalPERs’s governance czar, for instance, believes that “There’s a fundamental conflict in combining the roles of chairman and C.E.O.” and so CalPERS will vote to split the roles at JPMorgan just as they did last year. Others think that, y’know, it depends on the people. The people here would presumably remain the same though there’s some rumbling that Dimon would take his toys and go home if he couldn’t be chairman too.
Outside of CalPERS, though, the universal-good-governance theory doesn’t seem to move anyone much. Here, if you’re interested, are JPMorgan’s top 20 shareholders: Read more »
Yesterday JPMorgan research released a 328 page report arguing that global tier 1 investment banks were “un-investable,” and today JPMorgan reported record first-quarter earnings of $1.59 per share versus $1.40 consensus, so I guess it sort of looks like there’s a disconnect. But not really? Here are the analysts on banking regulation:
We believe Tier I IBs are un-investable at the moment and the right time to make a switch into Tier I IBs would be if we get more clarity on regulations providing us comfort around the ROE potential of Tier I IBs or we see IBs having to spin-off their businesses leading to capital return to shareholders. We believe Tier I IBs will continue to remain more exposed to the IB regulatory changes as they try to “defend their turf” while Tier II IBs have the option to step back more aggressively.
Jamie Dimon, meanwhile, responded to analyst questions this morning by more or less begging the analysts themselves to call their congresspeople and defend JPMorgan’s turf, arguing that banks are safer than ever, that JPMorgan’s size and scale and universality provides services that clients want and is good for the world, and that “I hope at one point we declare victory and stop eating our young.”1
The analyst report is a fascinating bit of business. The claim is that global investment banking – by which they mean of course FICC trading – will see market share move toward top-tier banks, driven mainly by the commoditization of the FICC business with clearing and greater price transparency around derivatives, as well as higher capital requirements and more complex and Balkanized regulation around trading activities. The result: Read more »
JP Morgan & Co.’s chairman and chief executive officer, James Dimon, renewed his apologies to shareholders for last year’s multibillion-dollar trading fiasco, and an investor that has pushed for corporate-governance changes at large financial firms said it would focus this proxy season on changing the bank’s board…The 57-year-old Mr. Dimon called the “London Whale” trading losses, which cost the company more than $6 billion and led to the departure of a top aide to the CEO, “a real kick in the teeth” and “the stupidest and most embarrassing situation I have ever been a part of.” Five pages of Mr. Dimon’s 30-page annual letter to shareholders, released Wednesday, outlined “lessons learned” from the incident, which damaged Mr. Dimon’s standing as the best risk manager on Wall Street. [WSJ]