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Foreign Exchange

FX market round-up: Puth resigns from JPMorgan

forex market participants were shocked by the news that David Puth, head of global currencies and commodities at JPMorgan, had suddenly resigned from the bank on November 13.

Puth, who had seen his star rise steadily at JPMorgan, was regarded as a long-term survivor at the bank. He originally joined the organization in 1998 when he moved to Chemical Bank in New York from Citi, where he had traded spot cable. After that he emerged unscathed from Chemical’s merger with Manufacturers Hanover Trust, that entity’s absorption by Chase Manhattan, the takeover of JPMorgan and then the merger with Bank One.

Well-placed sources say that in recent years Puth stood out as a star performer, with the foreign exchange business, and then latterly energy, outshining other business units. forex players are particularly surprised at the timing of Puth’s move, coming as it does at the end of the year before bonuses are agreed, let alone paid out.

Sources suggest that Puth’s departure is linked to the volatility of earnings in JPMorgan’s energy trading unit, which he recruited in the summer of 2005. A bank spokesman declined to comment on this, pointing out that while energy trading had been volatile, it had been profitable.

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