Business

JP Morgan's Jamie Dimon beats off shareholder revolt

JP Morgan chairman and chief executive Jamie Dimon will keep both jobs after shareholders voted in his favour.

US investors meeting in Florida were voting on whether he stay as chairman alongside his position in the other top seat as chief executive.

Shareholders were 32.2% in favour of creating a new chairman, lower than last year when the vote was 40.1%.

Good corporate governance practice in the US and the UK suggests the two key jobs be done by different people.

Last year JP Morgan Chase suffered a $6.2bn (£4bn) loss after trades made by the so-called London Whale turned out to be bad.

A group of shareholders were demanding an independent chairman to help protect the bank from future trading fiascos.

Disgruntled shareholders expressed their displeasure at the bank's management however by re-electing three JPMorgan directors to the board with an unusually slim majority.

The three directors were on the board's risk management committee.

'Winning team'

Shareholder's tend to vote the way the top executives want them to, and it is very rare shareholders oppose them.

Even sizeable minority votes against a motion at an annual general meeting are rare.

One of the shareholders that sponsored the proposal to split the chairman and chief executive roles, Lisa Lindsley, said: "The company pulled out all the stops" to ensure Mr Dimon's re-election.

One of the funds happy with Mr Dimon and JP Morgan's performance was Benjamin Ram, a co-manager of the Oppenheimer Main Street Select fund, which has $1.6bn under management.

He said: "Take a winning football team... The team gets part of the credit, but Jamie Dimon as the leader also gets the credit."

JPMorgan shares rose 2% to their highest level since 2001.

JP Morgan is among the companies that make up the leading Dow Jones index which is currently trading at around record levels.

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