Remember that time the US government broke up all the Too Big To Fail banks and prosecuted bankster executives for the crimes that brought down the financial markets in 2008? Me neither. Yet JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon is caterwauling to the media about Wall Street being “under assault” by US regulators.
Dimon’s complaining appeared to be instigated by JPMorgan posting a drop in quarterly profits. JPMorgan recently had to pay legal costs and fines related to a slew of criminal activity that ranged from fraud in the mortgage market, rigging currencies, and participating in the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme. The fines which the bank paid were relatively small and no JPMorgan executives were prosecuted. Quite an assault.
Nonetheless, Jamie Dimon told reporters on a conference call that he believed JPMorgan was facing an inappropriate level of scrutiny and oversight:
Jamie Dimon, grappling with multibillion-dollar legal costs and rising capital requirements at JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), said overlapping efforts by U.S. regulators place banks “under assault.” “We have five or six regulators or people coming after us on every different issue,” Dimon, 58, said today on a call with reporters after New York-based JPMorgan reported fourth-quarter results. “It’s a hard thing to deal with.”
JPMorgan, the largest U.S. bank by assets, posted a drop in fourth-quarter profit amid $990 million of legal expenses, about double what some analysts predicted. The legal costs, mostly tied to probes into currency rate-rigging, follow even bigger payments in 2013 related to mortgage bonds sold before the 2008 crisis by JPMorgan and firms it acquired.
Dimon’s assertion about over-regulation comes a short time after whistleblower Alayne Fleischmann detailed illegal activity at JPMorgan that helped set the stage and instigate the 2008 financial crisis. Fleischmann provided an eye witness account of how JPMorgan executives subverted compliance rules to market and sell fraudulent mortgage-backed financial securities to clients around the world – a crime that caused the meltdown in the mortgage market that spread through the global financial system and brought economies and governments around the world to their knees.
So no Jamie, you and JPMorgan have proved you need more oversight not less.