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JPMorgan Said to Hire Mangla, Gupte Back From Merrill Lynch

May 25 (Bloomberg) -- JPMorgan Chase & Co. hired Achintya Mangla and Aloke Gupte back from Merrill Lynch & Co., about a month after they departed for the U.S. rival, said two people with knowledge of the matter.

Mangla will become co-head of equity capital and derivatives markets for Asia outside Japan and Australia together with Arjun Khullar, one of the people said, declining to be identified as no public announcement has been made. Gupte will run convertible bond underwriting for the Asia-Pacific region, the position Mangla previously held, the person said.

Investment banks have stepped up hiring in Asia in the past year as the region led the global economy out of a recession. Investment-banking fees in Asia jumped 68 percent in the first four months from a year earlier to a record $5.6 billion, according to New York-based research firm Freeman & Co.

Mangla and Khullar will report to Doug Howland and Kester Ng, who were promoted to joint heads of equity capital and derivatives markets for Asia-Pacific, the person said.

JPMorgan’s Hong Kong-based spokeswoman Marie Cheung declined to comment, as did Rob Stewart of Merrill Lynch, the investment-banking division of Bank of America Corp. Mangla and Gupte weren’t available, said a person who answered the phone at JPMorgan’s Hong Kong offices.

Merrill Lynch hired Mangla in late April to run its convertible bond underwriting business in the Asia-Pacific outside Japan, people with knowledge of the matter said at the time. Gupte joined Merrill Lynch at the same time. Both bankers were on so-called gardening leave and hadn’t yet started work at Merrill Lynch when JPMorgan rehired them, one person said. They will be based in Hong Kong.

To contact the reporter on this story: Philip Lagerkranser at lagerkranser@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Otis Bilodeau at obilodeau@bloomberg.net

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