Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase & The Fed: Billions & Trillions for Insiders
by William F. Jasper
Tuesday, 15 May 2012
Oops! Another couple billion dollars lost. Oh well, no biggie; nothing to get too concerned about. That, in essence, was the reaction of Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, America’s biggest bank, to the news that Morgan had lost $2 billion in derivatives trading.
“This is a very unfortunate and inopportune time to have had this kind of mistake,” Dimon said in an interview on NBC’s Meet the Press with David Gregory on May 13.
But, not to worry, because JPMorgan Chase has plenty more cash where that came from. “This is not a risk that is life threatening to JPMorgan,” Dimon said. “This is a stupid thing that … we should never have done. But we are still going to earn a lot of money this quarter. So it isn’t like the company is jeopardized.”
Yes, if you’re Jamie Dimon or one of the other Wall Street insider banks — especially those with special status as “primary dealers” — that have a direct pipeline to the Fed’s “thin air” machine, a mere $2 billion is barely a trifle.
Thanks to the decades-long efforts of the Federal Reserve’s tireless nemesis, Rep. Ron Paul, last year the Fed was finally audited by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), which partially lifted the veil on some of the egregious conflicts of interest and colossal theft that have become commonplace in that institution. The GAO audit only partially lifted the veil because the Fed’s lobbyists succeeded in limiting the Congressionally mandated audit; nevertheless, it was the first time the Fed had been independently audited and the revelations were eye-popping. As Senator Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) noted, on May 14, after Dimon’s Meet the Press interview, the incestuous relationship between Wall Street and the Fed bespeaks obvious corruption on an enormous scale. Sen. Sanders pointed out that the GAO audit revealed:
• Dimon served on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York at the same time that his bank received over $390 billion in total emergency loans from the Fed.
• JPMorgan Chase was used by the Fed as a clearinghouse for the Fed’s emergency lending programs.
• Dimon was successful in getting the Fed to provide JPMorgan Chase with an 18-month exemption from risk-based leverage and capital requirements.
• Dimon convinced the Fed to take risky mortgage-related assets off of Bear Stearns balance sheet before JPMorgan Chase acquired this troubled investment bank.
$390 billion isn’t small change, even considering our current stratospheric government spendathons that are now measured in Trillions. And since we’re mentioning trillions, it is apropos to bring up another figure that came out of the GAO audit of the Fed: $16 Trillion.