News Release

JPMorgan “Shock Disclosure” a “Wake-Up Call We Dare Not Ignore”


The Financial Times reports today: “JPMorgan Chase announced a surprise $2 billion trading loss on credit derivatives trading, which chief executive Jamie Dimon blamed on ‘errors, sloppiness and bad judgement’ and warned ‘could get worse.’

“The shock disclosure, made after the market closed on Thursday in a regulatory filing, prompted renewed calls for tougher regulation. Investors reacted by sending the bank’s shares down by more than 9 percent when Wall Street opened on Friday. Other U.S. banking stocks also suffered sharp falls.”

Stephany Griffith-Jones is Financial Markets Program Director at the Initiative for Policy Dialogue at Columbia University.

WILLIAM K. BLACK, blackw at
Available for a limited number of interviews, Black is now an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri, Kansas City and the author of “The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One.” He was the deputy staff director of the national commission that investigated the cause of the savings and loan debacle. He said today: “JPMorgan has announced that it has suffered large losses, and remains exposed to far greater losses, because purported ‘economic hedges’ did not perform as ‘expected’ because they were poorly designed. These purported hedges are not real. JPMorgan was speculating wildly and its panicky releases reveal that it is afraid that the positions it took exposed it to grave risks. The experience demonstrates the importance of the Volcker rule, the largest banks’ efforts to gut and evade the rule, and the continuing refusal of bank regulators to say ‘no’ to practices of the systemically dangerous institutions or SDIs (the roughly 20 ‘too big to fail’ banks) that are unsafe and unsound. As long as we permit the SDIs to remain so large that regulators fear that their failure will produce a global crisis we are rolling the dice 20 times a day wondering when (not ‘if’) the next SDI failure will occur and blow up the economy. JPMorgan’s losses on its faux hedges are the wake-up call we dare not ignore.”

Also see: “‘JOBS Act’ a ‘Recipe for Fraud’ Creating a ‘Race to the Bottom’.”