Probably our favorite part of yesterday's final installment of the Wall Street Journal's three-part series on the destruction of Bear Stearns is an exchange that takes place between JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon and Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit.
As you probably know, Dimon was the heir apparent to ascend to the top of Citigroup after serving for years as the right-hand man of banking empire building Sandy Weil. At the last moment, however, he was forced out of the bank and the top spot was handed to Citigroup's lawyer. Fast forward a few years and Dimon gets to run Citigroup's rival, JP Morgan, and that uppity lawyer is forced to resign in disgrace. Pandit is summoned up to take over Citi.
And, after the jump, here's Dimon hazing the new kid on the Wall Street CEO block.
Messrs. Geithner and Dimon led off with some brief remarks, noting that J.P. Morgan would be guaranteeing Bear Stearns's debts and that if the pact hadn't come together, the market impact may have been catastrophic. During the question-and-answer session, Citigroup Inc.'s new CEO, Vikram Pandit, spoke up.
Mr. Pandit -- who did not initially identify himself -- asked a shrewd but technical question: How would the deal affect the risk to Bear Stearns's trading partners on certain long-term contracts?
The query irked Mr. Dimon. "Who is this?" he snapped. Mr. Pandit identified himself as "Vikram." Offended that Mr. Pandit was taking up time with what he considered granular inquiries, Mr. Dimon shot back, "Stop being such a jerk." He added that Citigroup "should thank us" for staving off further mayhem on Wall Street.
Bear Stearns Neared Collapse Twice in Frenzied Last Days [Wall Street Journal]