11,456 $m
Financial Services
Despite ongoing investigations, J.P. Morgan made a record USD $21.3 billion in profit in 2012. The brand has worked to overcome the stigma of “too big to fail,” trading losses that exceeded USD $6 billion after the "London Whale” fiasco was revealed in May 2012, and US Senate hearings citing top executives as the reason for the losses. Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon addressed the case in a letter to shareholders, writing: “The London Whale was the stupidest and most embarrassing situation I have ever been a part of... I also want our shareholders to know that I take personal responsibility for what happened.” While Dimon’s efforts earned continued board support, many investors urged a split of the chairman and CEO positions, citing a conflict of interest and a need for oversight. The UK’s FCA and the US’s SEC investigations have led to USD $920 million in fines and penalties. Furthermore, two former employees have been indicted by a New York grand jury on charges relating to the trading loss. The former trader at the heart of the scandal, Bruno Iksil, nicknamed “The London Whale” because of the size of his holdings, is reportedly working with authorities and is unlikely to face charges. The next year will be a critical time for the brand. As Dimon wrote in a memo to staff, "If you don’t acknowledge mistakes, you can’t fix them and learn from them. So now, as in the past, we are recognizing our problems, rolling up our sleeves, and fixing them."