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Tangel reports: "Theatrics for Jamie Dimon's day on Capitol Hill began according to the script for high-profile Washington hearings, with requisite heckling from protesters."

A protester screams at JPMorgan Chase and Company Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon as he testifies before the US Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. (photo: Reuters)
A protester screams at JPMorgan Chase and Company Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon as he testifies before the US Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. (photo: Reuters)

"Jamie Dimon Is a Crook"

By Andrew Tangel, Los Angeles Times

13 June 12


heatrics for Jamie Dimon's day on Capitol Hill began according to the script for high-profile Washington hearings, with requisite heckling from protesters.

As the chairman and chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co. arrived to take his seat at a Senate Banking Committee hearing, a man in a brown blazer began shouting at Dimon as a crush of photographers snapped away.

“Jamie Dimon’s a crook," the man yelled, as Dimon appeared unfazed. "This guy should be going to prison."

After he quieted down, Capitol police allowed the man to take his seat, as senators and spectators entered the hearing room.

Shortly thereafter, a chant erupted -- "Stop foreclosures now!" -- among some protesters, including the earlier heckler. Capitol police then removed them.

The topic of the day, of course, is not JPMorgan's loan servicing but its risk management -- and how the bank sustained a more than $2-billion loss in risky derivatives trades.

Opening statements by the panel's chairman, Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), and ranking member Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) hinted at what questions Dimon faces in the two-hour hearing.

"First, did the losses from these trades threaten the safety and soundness of JPMorgan?" Shelby said. "And second, could it happen again?"


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+36 # AndreM5 2012-06-13 14:22
First answer: "Of course not, my bonus is in no way threatened by the $2B+ loss. That was other people's money."

Second answer: "It already did happen again, both before this incident and since. And it will happen again tomorrow because that is how we roll. Got a problem with that Shelby? I didn't think so."
+8 # John Locke 2012-06-14 09:24
AndreM5: Love your comment, and sadly it is appropriate because that is excactly how Wall Street feels...
0 # RMDC 2012-06-16 06:23
Yes, OPM -- other people's money. The first rule of banking and investing.
+31 # whatwehavehere. . 2012-06-13 21:27
Jamie saunters into the hearing, takes a slap or two and all is forgiven. Nothing changes with the banking industry. Democrats are slightly better than Republicans at wanting banking regulations but only slightly.
Here is the thing! Everyone wants to blame Obama and Co. for poor recovery. Well, maybe they are right! If you fix what is broken there may be remedy but guess what? Housing is the thing that isn't getting fixed! Jamie and his bunch and seemingly the politicians have moved on to other arguments but out here in the ranks, we appraisers and Realtors know what the problem is. The average homeowner has lost 40% of his wealth, houses can't be sold and they continue to decline in value, stagnating the economy. Romney wants them bulldozed and sold off to investors but I can tell you that isn't the answer! Investors are buying liquidated REOs and short sales at pennies on the dollar and re-marketing through investment packages that are destined to fail again after a renter or two tears up the house and green out of town investors discover handling real estate ain't easy!
I guarantee a second recession with recovery long in coming if people's pain over losing their homes or value in them continues. Municipalities losing their tax base, dealing with derelict housing. There is no recovery for those duped by sub-prime predatory loans. The housing market continues to die, except for the wealthy, and no one is paying attention!
+10 # mdhome 2012-06-14 05:41
Yes, people are not likely to be happy renters after they have had their savings stolen by the banks and had their house "stolen from them" by the banks.
+5 # John Locke 2012-06-14 09:29
mdhome: and watched the government aid the banks to steal the money and their home.

Geithner, remember, required AIG to pay 100% of their obligations to Wall Street Banks, when they had in place what a 25% payout?...If AIG had been allowed to fail the foreclosures would have stopped abruptly! Those second party contracts paid the banks to foreclose! if those defaults were not compensated, the Banks would have lost interest in foreclosures and renogtiated with the borrowers.
+13 # Street Level 2012-06-13 23:22
These thieving bankers should also be brought up on man slaughter charges. What the media ignores is what happens to people post eviction. Many have are without resources and are already impoverished, having spent their life savings in a futile attempt to keep their homes. One man in California shot himself on the morning Wells Fargo was evicting him and his elderly wife and this is just one story that managed to get told.
When the feet of the wealthy no longer touch the ground, they have lost their connection with humanity.
Shameful, absolutely shameful.
-8 # 2012-06-14 06:03
I listened to his entire testimony and I think he acquitted himself well.

I think the whole hearing was designed for media consumption. Protesters with large signs and obvious intentions were allowed into the hearing room. Questions from the legislators were often of the when-did-you-st op-beating-your -wife variety.

While neither taxpayer money nor customer money was ever at risk, our legislators flock around, harassing a guy who, it appears, made a poor business decision (or did you expect every decision of his to be perfect?). Yet his poor decision-making will still result in a return of $16 billion to his investors this year. Meanwhile a Jon Corzine -- who "lost" a similar amount of money -- gets no attention at all. And Corzine's lost funds situation clearly violated existing laws and regulations and caused a serious loss to investors.

Why the difference in the handling of these two cases? Could it be that Corzine is a fundraising bundler for President Obama while Dimon has criticized some of the banking rule-making? No, no, that is probably just a coincidence.

Lee Nason
New Bedford, Massachusetts
+1 # Granny Weatherwax 2012-06-15 09:21
Yep he did well for everyone that actually count.
His investors.

The problem, you see, is shortsightedness.

The system is arranged so that whenever some crook finds a way to make more money than his neighbors, the neighbors do the same as the crook regardless of the long term, medium term or even frequently short term consequences for the public at large or event to themselves.

Add to that the Ayn Rand Objectivism that "if it feels good (for me) then it is not only good, it is the only moral thing to do" that infused in the political psyche of the Greedy One Percent and leads to ex post facto legalization of any corrupt, violent or otherwise morally sickening act that lines the pockets of powerful people. (That includes corporations, my friend.)

Essentially when the bully shows up at the birthday party and takes as much as the cake as he can, instead of the supposed adults having a word with him they tell all the kids to try and do the same.

And this is good?
+10 # cordleycoit 2012-06-14 07:06
Why is Jamie Dimon still at liberty he was running a scam and got caught but like war criminals, Morgans men don't do time. "Book 'em Danno."
0 # John Locke 2012-06-18 10:17
cordleycoit: when everyone in government is on the take, You will never see one crook going against the other, Myer Lansky figured that out decades ago, and corporatized the syndicate. Including with a board of Directors and they even had by-laws, and meetings
+6 # JSRaleigh 2012-06-14 09:43
"First, did the losses from these trades threaten the safety and soundness of JPMorgan?" Shelby said. "And second, could it happen again?"

First - No, FDIC has got his back.
Second - Doesn't matter, FDIC has got his back.

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