JPMorgan Chase & Co., the biggest U.S. lender by assets, will eliminate 20 investment-banking jobs in London as market conditions weaken, according to a person with knowledge of the cuts.
The staff cuts aren’t related to the $2 billion loss at the New York-based company’s chief investment office in London, said the person, who asked for anonymity because the investment bank reductions haven’t been made public. The firm has about 8,000 employees in the London investment bank, the person said.
Lenders are trimming staff amid pressure to cut expenses as new revenue becomes scarce and regulators demand more capital. Banks pulled back from making new loans to package into bonds as Europe’s debt crisis roiled credit markets. Trading revenue from securitized products at the 10 biggest global investment banks dropped to about $10 billion last year from about $17.5 billion in 2010, according to data from consultant Coalition Ltd.
JPMorgan eliminated some senior mortgage traders and salespersons in the U.S. investment bank earlier this year, according to people with direct knowledge of the moves. The firm also dismissed about 5 percent of its equities traders and sales staff on March 20 and cut about 100 employees in its treasury and securities services unit in January, according to three people with knowledge of those moves.
Sticking With Iksil
The bank continues to employ Bruno Iksil, the trader known as the London Whale whose positions may have distorted prices in some derivatives markets. Brian Marchiony, a spokesman for the New York-based firm, confirmed Iksil’s status. The New York Times reported earlier that Iksil is leaving JPMorgan by the end of this year.
Bloomberg News first reported April 5 that Iksil had accumulated derivatives that track the financial health of corporations, and that the holdings were so large that they distorted prices. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon later disclosed a $2 billion trading loss that he attributed to an “egregious” failure at the chief investment office in London, where Iksil works. Ina Drew, who ran the CIO, retired days after the loss became public.
A call to Iksil in London was referred to the public relations office. JPMorgan fell 1.2 percent to $35.82 at 2:52 p.m. in New York. The stock has gained 7.7 percent this year.