Target: Jamie Dimon, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of JPMorgan Chase
Goal: Condemn the multi-million dollar bonus Dimon received despite the bank’s ongoing legal troubles
At one point Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase was paid more than any other chief executive officer in America. But that was before waves of legal woes rocked the nation’s largest bank. Although many of the actions investigated took place years ago, Dimon presided over some of the most troubling including widespread mortgage fraud. Now after being stuck with a bill for $22 billion in fines and penalties shareholders have decided to give Dimon an enormous pay increase.
Dimon’s base salary was $1.5 million again in 2013 but he was rewarded with a whopping $18.5 million in bonuses, almost twice the previous year’s. Dimon’s outrageous pay increase must be viewed alongside his employer’s track record of fiscal irresponsibility: illegal trading, price fixing, and mortgage fraud which directly contributed to the housing crisis and the Great Recession. Along with its own misdeeds JPMorgan Chase is also responsible for legal problems at both Washington Mutual and Bear Stearns which the bank purchased in 2008.
While average Americans continue to struggle through a still-sluggish economy banks like JPMorgan Chase reward their top executives with lavish stock options and other bonuses. Call on Jamie Dimon to give his bonus back to the American people, many of whom lost their homes in questionable or illegal foreclosure proceedings. Demand that he reject future bonuses until he can demonstrate JPMorgan Chase’s commitment to abiding by the letter of the law in all its banking practices.
Dear Mr. Dimon,
The year 2013 was not a good one for JPMorgan Chase, although it most certainly was a good year for you. Despite being saddled with billions in legal costs due to a laundry list of bad banking practices your shareholders opted to increase your pay by some 74% over last year. Some would say this was because you helped move beyond legal troubles while maintaining the bank’s status as the largest in the United States. But consumers and regulators continue to express concerns over JPMorgan Chase’s culture of profits-over-people.
How many American families lost their homes in fraudulent foreclosures? Settlements that cost your bank a few billion might be just another cost of doing business for you, but they do not give these families back their homes and they don’t guarantee that JPMorgan Chase has learned its lesson. Rewarding you with a roughly $20 million paycheck would seem to suggest it has not.
I find your pay raise and bonus options deplorable considering the current state of affairs for most Americans and the amount to which you and your employer contributed to their ongoing struggles in this Great Recession. I call on you to reject your most recent bonus package and to refrain from accepting another dollar in bonuses until you can prove to government regulators and the public that JPMorgan Chase is 100% committed to upholding all applicable banking laws.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: World Economic Forum via Flickr