NEW YORK - Peter Hancock, who abruptly resigned Friday as chief financial officer of J.P. Morgan & Co., was at pains to explain Monday that his departure was not motivated by differences with the company's strategic direction or by the prospect of a takeover.

Mr. Hancock, 42, said he was leaving Morgan after 20 years to pursue entrepreneurial projects. He had been finance chief just over a year. Thomas Ketchum, chief administrative officer, will assume the role of CFO.

Analysts said the resignation is somewhat unsettling. "You worry whether there is some problem that has been discovered or where there were differences of opinion as to the direction of the company," said Lawrence Cohn, an analyst at Ryan Beck & Co.

A Morgan spokeswoman said Mr. Hancock had expressed an interest in running his own show. "He wanted to be his own boss," she said. The move "was unrelated to business concerns."

The company was to release the announcement more than a week ago, but delayed it because of a death in Mr. Hancock's family.

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