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!

JPMorgan: Give Jamie Dimon a Break

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Reports out over the past couple of days indicate JPMorgan Chase (JPM) CEO Jamie Dimon looked like he wanted to vomit when told of his firm's now-infamous $2 billion trading loss. According to The Wall Street Journal Dimon "didn't sleep well for the next several nights ... and fought the anxiety by getting up very early to exercise and head into the office."

TheStreet contributor Susan Antilla did an excellent job discussing reports that JPM Chief Investment Officer Ina Drew, who is a woman, "tearfully offered to resign" and "cried -- a bunch of times" through the whole ordeal.

The entire debacle and the reaction to it, particularly these discussions of emotion, triggered me to think along a couple of different lines. First, like Antilla, I considered displays of emotion. And, second, I assessed misdirected emotion.

Don't blame Dimon or Drew for your mistakes

Investors have loads of outrage for Dimon, Drew, the "London Whale" and big banks once again. And, really, it's all kind of funny. Consider the following excerpt from a Bloomberg story on shareholder lawsuits filed against Dimon and JPMorgan: "The defendant Dimon went so far as to publicly and vigorously dispute that any investment safety regulation was necessary for financial institutions such as JPMorgan, because the company was purportedly so careful with its investments that no such regulations would be necessary," James Baker, a California resident, said in his complaint. "All of the individual defendants knew this was simply not the case."

Here's a classic case of blaming others for your own mistakes.

Think about something. People such as Baker, presumably, held shares of JPM at some point after the financial crisis subsided up until the time the stock cratered when Dimon went public -- and, for the record, he could have waited longer but chose not to -- with news of the loss. That, in and of itself, represents quite a gamble. Going long a bank stock! Not a position for the faint of heart or the prudent long-term investor. It's about as risky a "value" play as you'll find.

When they heard Dimon go "so far as to publicly and vigorously dispute that any investment safety regulation was necessary for ... JPMorgan," they apparently believed him. If not, it would have made sense for the careful and rational investor to sell at that point as a result of skepticism, cynicism or whatever for these apparent scoundrels. But they did not sell. Instead, they would have us come to the only conclusion a logical person could come to: They put their faith in Dimon and the folks they now refer to as "defendants."

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 17,066.82 -12.75 -0.07%
S&P 500 1,999.69 +2.95 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,571.7360 +14.0410 0.31%

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