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How JPMorgan survived the loss of a generation

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon wants a clear, new structure for the bank, without personal fiefdoms and superstars. But what does this mean for one of its most important franchises – the structured credit business that JPMorgan once dominated – now in the hands of a new generation of managers? Alex Chambers reports.

How the structured credit revolution started


Tony Best faces a daunting task. As European head of investor client management at JPMorgan, he is one of a select band of managers charged with putting the bank back in what it still considers its rightful place – at the very pinnacle of the structured credit business.

The task is made all the more challenging by the ghosts of JPMorgan past – a gilded generation of investment bankers who can take credit not only for making JPMorgan enormously profitable but, also, for the creation of an entire market. In recent years, most of that group have left the bank.

There was a halcyon period when the name JPMorgan was almost synonymous with capital markets innovation. In the years before and after the turn of the century the bank was responsible for a series of advances using credit derivatives and traditional securitization technologies that culminated in the creation of the structured credit sector. And that was arguably the biggest product market development in the financial services industry in the past 20 years.

JPMorgan is approaching the end of its second large integration since the turn of the century.

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