Losses Shake Markets
The aftermath of a $2 billion trading loss at JPMorgan Chase & Co., continues to spread both in and outside the company.
The financial services provider recently announced that it lost more than $2 billion as a result of failed investment strategies. At the center of the loss was the use of a so-called value at risk calculation that gave the bank’s central investment unit a lower risk assessment of its trades.
According to published reports, JPMorgan was able maintain a separate risk monitoring set-up with the chief investment unit reporting directly to Jamie Dimon, CEO/chairman.
The derivatives in question were supposed to help control risk exposure and invest excess funds in its corporate treasury.
As a result of the loss, JPMorgan said it may experience an $800 million loss this quarter when it initially a projected a $200 million profit within its corporate and private equity segment.
Speaking at a May 15 shareholders’ meeting, Dimon apologized saying the loss should not have happened and acknowledged that the buck stopped with him.
The day before the meeting, Ina Drew, chief investment officer at JPMorgan, announced she would retire from the firm after more than 30 years of service, the company said. Matt Zames, currently co-head of global fixed income in the investment bank and head of capital markets within the mortgage bank, was tapped to succeed her.
Dimon said Mike Cavanagh, CEO of JPMorgan’s treasury and securities services group, will lead a team of senior executives from across the company to oversee and coordinate a firmwide response to the recent losses in the chief investment office.
“It's important to remember that our company is very strong and well-capitalized, with leading franchises across our businesses,” Dimon said in a company statement. “We maintain our fortress balance sheet and capital strength to withstand setbacks like this, and we will learn from our mistakes and remain diligently focused on our clients, who count on us every day."
JPMorgan said it has $2.3 trillion in assets and operations worldwide.
Meanwhile, leaders with the House Financial Services Committee said they will conduct a hearing to investigate JPMorgan’s losses. Lawmakers had not released a date for the hearing by press time. The SEC and the Department of Justice are also looking into the matter.