BANKTHINK

Morning Scan: Who's Left to Succeed Jamie Dimon Now?

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Receiving Wide Coverage ...

Another One Bites the Dust: Since JPMorgan Chase let $6 billion get swallowed by its London Whale, the bank has lost or replaced most of the senior executives below CEO Jamie Dimon, including its chief financial officer, co-chief operating officer, chief risk officer, chief compliance officer, co-head of litigation, chief investment officer, chief information officer and head of consumer banking. Now you can add to that list Mike Cavanagh, co-head of JPMorgan Chase's investment bank and heir apparent to Dimon, who quit unexpectedly to take a co-president job at private equity firm Carlyle Group. The Wall Street Journal has lots of good, if anonymously sourced, details, including: Dimon practically begged Cavanagh to stay, asking "what they could do to persuade him to stay or what might be another option for him"; Cavanagh decided to leave (and give up the potential future JPMorgan CEO job) after seeing what a drag it is to deal with bank regulatory scrutiny these days; and if Dimon gets abducted by aliens tomorrow, consumer bank chief Gordon Smith is the most likely interim successor, but he "isn't expected to compete for the permanent job." Dealbook is more optimistic about Smith's long-term chances, citing anonymice who argue that his candidacy as a potential successor "reflects the growing importance of retail banking focused on credit cards, auto loans and mortgages over the complex trades and deal-making that Mr. Cavanagh oversaw." Financial Times

But Is That with a Capital P? Bitcoin is property, not currency, the IRS says. That decision "forces users who have grown accustomed to operating under the government's radar to deal with new tax issues and reporting requirements" and may be "a way to push Bitcoin further away from the fringes and into the mainstream financial system," Dealbook writes. New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg

Bigger and Better: Shocking research from the New York Fed finds that if you want to raise money, it's good to be a big bank. As the Journal puts it, "large banks have enjoyed asignificant funding advantage over both smaller peers and the biggest companies outside the banking sector as a result of an implicit government backing." On the flip side, there are also costs to being big about $100 billion in legal settlements since the financial crisis, according to Financial Times research. More than half of those penalties, paid by Wall Street banks and their foreign rivals, "have been extracted in the past year. The sum reflects a substantial shift in political attitudes towards banks, as regulators and the Obama administration seek to counter perceptions that bankers have got off lightly for their role in the financial crisis." Perhaps related, the Journal covers the sad case of a former Deutsche Bank senior executive, who committed suicide earlier this year "after complaining that he was anxious about government investigations into the bank, a London coroner said Tuesday."

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Big Winners and Losers for Banks on Election Night

Republicans won a sizable victory late Tuesday, retaking the Senate after losing it eight years ago. Banks, too, largely benefited, as an ally of the industry captured a Senate seat in West Virginia, two credit union allies fell and a key Democratic senator squeaked past. Here's how election night played out for banks.

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