Tags: Dimon | Obama | JPMorgan | Whale

WSJ: Govt Punishing JPMorgan for Dimon's 'Deviation from Obama Script'

Thursday, 03 Oct 2013 10:40 AM

By Dan Weil

JPMorgan Chase, which faces at least seven federal investigations, is paying the consequences of CEO Jamie Dimon's opposition to White House policy, according to an editorial in The Wall Street Journal.

"Keep in mind that this is one bank that did not need taxpayer assistance in 2008 or since. And this partly explains why Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon is the Obama administration's favorite Wall Street target," the editorial contends.

"Washington in this era prefers dependent banks that quietly accept their role as money pots to be raided when politics demands. Mr. Dimon keeps deviating from the Obama script."

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Dimon had the nerve to criticize the Dodd-Frank Act on financial reform, the editorial argues. And then he spoke out last year against Washington's anti-business rhetoric, even though Dimon is a lifelong Democrat.

"He even hinted that he preferred a change in the White House," the editorial says. "All of that gave the regulators motive to dislike Mr. Dimon."

And then the bank's "London Whale" trading debacle, which produced a $6 billion loss, gave regulators room to go after JPMorgan.

"All of this is a lesson about the politicized world of finance after Dodd-Frank. Mistakes such as the Whale trades ought to be a matter settled among shareholders, directors and management," it states.

"But politicians and regulators now believe that the big banks all work for them. Washington is looting JPMorgan, and may yet string up Jamie Dimon, as a lesson in what will happen to any banker who dares to disagree with his Washington bosses."

Star bank analyst Dick Bove, vice president of equity research at Rafferty Capital Markets, also thinks the government is playing dirty pool in pursuing the bank.

"What the United States government is doing to this company is outrageously incorrect and unfair," Bove writes in a commentary obtained by CNBC.

"It lacks even the simplest concepts of equity and honesty. Moreover, the actions of the government are dangerous to its citizens and the standing of U.S. banks in the global financial system."

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Related Stories:

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CEO Dimon Tells JPMorgan Staff to Brace for More Regulatory Woes

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