Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), has been busy cleaning up the bank’s mortgage mess while holding grudges in the process. The CEO has spent $18.5 billion on the mortgage cleanup effort and has said he plans on holding those responsible for their role in the mortgages instead of JP Morgan footing the bill.
Investors have been pressuring banks to buyback the terrible loans they sold to them back in 2007-2008. The pressure is pretty intense too with the latest threat of investors suing the bank because of the $95 billion in bonds that were a bad grade. Unfortunately for JP Morgan, they are being represented by Gibbs & Bruns LLP whom are making quite a living off of this mortgage nightmare. Last year, the law firm won a $8.5 billion lawsuit against Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) for investors in similar circumstances.
Dimon says he will fight some of the lawsuits saying that market conditions also contributed to the loan declines, which was out of the bank’s control. Also, the CEO has said he will fight the “sophisticated” investors who knew and understood the risks at the time of purchase.
I can understand both arguments. On one side you have angry investors who want their money back from the faulty loans they were sold. I would want the bank to repurchase my loan too. However, at the same time I think some of these investors are taking advantage of the banks.
Similar to what Jamie Dimon said, I believe the banks should not be required to pay back the “smart” investors who knew the risks prior to purchase. These individuals knew this was a possibility and they should have thought about that before they purchased.
Just when the banks start to get back into shape, they are spending billions on mortgage repayments to investors. Bank of America’s CEO Brian Moynihan took a similar stance as JP Morgan’s Dimon back in 2010 but it failed to produce results.
As of right now, JP Morgan said they expect the repurchase costs to total up to $350 million per quarter, with as much as $10 billion total needing to be repurchased. That doesn’t include the legal costs either, so as you can imagine the banks are bleeding money which could come back to bite them in the end. Lets see if Dimon is more successful at fighting back than BofA’s Moynihan.