From the Crowd

Commentary and analysis from outside voices in venture capital, hedge funds and economics

New banking rules have not hurt Jamie Dimon

June 8, 2011: 2:36 PM ET

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon stood up to Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke this week, arguing that new regulations are keeping the banks from lending. That's not true.

By Larry Doyle, contributor

When do you know that somebody is tone deaf?

Those with any measure of 'sense on cents' know when an individual is tone deaf. How so? When said individual racks up compensation in the multiple tens of millions of dollars from an industry that was bailed out by taxpayer funds and then complains about changes in regulatory oversight, you know that individual is tone deaf. To whom do I refer? Welcome to the world of JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon.

I have long respected Dimon for his intellect, attention to detail, risk management skills, and general corporate integrity. He and his colleagues at JP Morgan (JPM) are far from perfect. That said, relative to other executives with whom I have crossed paths on Wall Street, Dimon is far superior. I know, I know that assessment is very relative.

Many Wall Street execs do not rate highly in comparison to shoeshine guys or those in the carting business, said with all due respect to individuals in those lines of work.

All this said, I am more than willing to call Dimon on the carpet when I believe he is out of line and does not hear the message and the tone of what is transpiring in America.

Jamie Dimon is whining about new and prospective increased banking regulations in our nation today. The Wall Street Journal highlighted his comments in a meeting with Ben Bernanke yesterday, CEO Tells Fed Chief New Rules Hurt Banks,

The most pointed comments Tuesday came from Mr. Dimon, who has been vocal about the effect regulatory changes are having on the banking industry. Ticking off a list of changes to financial markets over the past three years, Mr. Dimon said he feared someone would write a book soon about how government overreach had hurt the economic recovery.

Hurt the economic recovery? Well have they hurt JP Morgan and Jamie Dimon personally? I do not think so and I have 'multiple tens of millions of reasons' to show that they have not. What are they? Dimon's compensation.

As The New York Times recently highlighted, JP Morgan Paid Dimon $20.8 Million in 2010,

JPMorgan Chase paid Jamie Dimon, its chief executive, a total of $20.8 million last year,….JPMorgan noted that its calculation of Mr. Dimon's 2010 compensation did not include the$17 million in restricted stock and options that he was awarded in February for his performance last year.

The big increase in Mr. Dimon's compensation came in a year in which JPMorgan's annual earnings jumped 48 percent, to $17.4 billion.

Mr. Dimon's total compensation is still well below the $35.8 million he received in 2008, according to the filing.

If my math is accurate, those figures tally up to in excess of $70 million in total compensation over the last three years. Clearly new and prospective regulations for Wall Street are not hurting Jamie Dimon. How is it that Jamie can benefit to this extent?

Jamie Dimon and many other senior executives within the Wall Street hierarchy are benefiting like never before from the oligopoly that defines Wall Street currently. With lessened competition and a perpetuation of self-regulation within its brokerage activities, JP Morgan and its cohorts on Wall Street continue to rack up perfect or near perfect trading results in terms of daily profitability. (Defined as making money each and every day). I can assure you that in a normal market environment, no bank would generate these sort of results.

It's time for Jamie Dimon to take a trip to middle America and get a dose of reality before whining about banking regulations. While he is at it, he may want to talk to some people about the 13-30% rates of interest Chase charges on its credit cards.

"Jamie, welcome to the real world!! Navigate accordingly."

Larry Doyle is a Wall Street veteran, having worked at such banks as First Boston, Bear Stearns and Union Bank. He blogs at www.senseoncents.com 

Join the Conversation
Current Issue
  • Give the gift of Fortune
  • Get the Fortune app
  • Subscribe
Powered by WordPress.com VIP.