This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

American Express Says JPMorgan Is Credit Card Copycat

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- JPMorgan Chase (JPM) is copying every move of American Express (AXP) in its bid to court affluent consumers, a strategy that recently subjected the bank to a bit of ribbing from a top executive at the credit card company.

Noting earlier this month at an investor conference hosted by Citigroup that American Express has "a number of competitors in the US who certainly are aimed at affluent consumers," Amex Vice Chairman Ed Gilligan took a pointed jab at JPMorgan's retail arm.

"I would say Chase in particular certainly has been executing well their strategy, but their strategy seems to be to follow American Express's strategy from a couple of years ago," said Gilligan, seemingly unconcerned with an unspoken banking industry practice of avoiding public comments regarding competitors.

9 Oil, Gold Stocks That Rise on Bad News



"I don't view them as a leader in the field," Gilligan went on. "I view them as following step-by-step the things that American Express are doing, and they are executing well. But I think American Express is truly differentiating itself. Chase probably has 70%, 80% of their revenue in their card segment coming from balances. So whether they may be growing spend, their revenue is still down year over year. American Express is growing our charge volume nicely in the US and around the world, and our revenue is growing," Gilligan said.

If indeed JPMorgan is following American Express's playbook, it would not be surprising. Gordon Smith, JPMorgan's CEO of Card Services, joined JPMorgan in 2007 after spending 25 years at American Express. A call to Smith was not returned, and a JPMorgan spokesman declined to comment on Gilligan's remarks.

Bob Napoli, who covers American Express (but not JPMorgan) for William Blair & Co., argues Amex has "been more innovative over the last couple of years than in the more than 10 years that I've followed them."

10 Mid-Cap Stocks That Have Almost Doubled in 2012



While he believes JPMorgan "is doing overall a pretty good job" when it comes to revenues, he added that "we don't have the data to try to break that down into the affluent portion of JPMorgan."

Still, Napoli notes that "American Express is still growing very strongly" posting what he calls "solid double-digit spending growth." He concludes that "if JPMorgan is having success in that area it doesn't appear to be affecting American Express at this point."

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,083.80 -2.83 -0.02%
S&P 500 1,987.98 +0.97 0.05%
NASDAQ 4,472.1080 -1.5890 -0.04%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs