Bank Analyst Mayo Re-Emerges as `Free Agent' at JPMorgan Event

  • Mayo was among analysts cut as CLSA scales back in U.S.
  • He was known for sparring with bank executives in past

Mike Mayo, the bank analyst who sparred with JPMorgan Chase & Co. executives at prior Investor Day presentations, showed up at the lender’s 2017 event less than 24 hours after his former employer, CLSA Ltd., shut down its U.S. equity-research operation.

“Mike Mayo, free agent analyst,” he said when introducing himself Tuesday, before asking a question to JPMorgan Chief Financial Officer Marianne Lake about profitability from deposits.

He has long been one of the most vocal analysts on Wall Street. In 2014, Mayo challenged the bank about the logic of holding an asset-management business, asking Mary Callahan Erdoes, chief executive officer of that unit, how it felt to be “trapped” at JPMorgan when he estimated her operation would be worth more as a stand-alone company.

A year earlier, Mayo asked JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon if clients might shift to banks with higher capital ratios. Dimon dismissed the significance of the issue.

That’s why I’m richer than you,” he told Mayo, drawing laughter from the audience.

CLSA, the brokerage owned by China’s Citic Securities Co., dismissed 90 U.S.-based employees on Monday, most of whom worked in research, including research sales support staff, as well as a few traders, according to spokeswoman Simone Wheeler.

— With assistance by Laura J Keller

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