JPMorgan Shrinks Compensation Pool 4.2% at Investment-Bank Unit

Jan 14, 2014 7:32 am ET

Jan. 14 (Bloomberg) -- JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s corporate and investment bank allocated 4.2 percent less for employee compensation last year as the division’s revenue was little changed.

The unit’s $10.8 billion in compensation fell to 30 percent of revenue, excluding accounting adjustments, from 32 percent in 2012, according to figures posted today on the New York-based firm’s website. The amount equals $207,368 for each of the division’s 52,250 employees. The unit employed 52,022 people a year earlier.

JPMorgan, the biggest U.S. bank by assets, has struggled to meet expense goals amid surging litigation costs and efforts to improve compliance. The company wouldn’t penalize employees for losses tied to bad loans sold by firms it acquired amid the financial crisis, including Bear Stearns Cos. and Washington Mutual Inc.’s banking operations, Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon said in November.

“It’s hard to look at JPMorgan and say you’re going to blame people at JPMorgan, the existing employees, for what happened with Bear Stearns and WaMu,” said Dimon, 57. “We’ve never blamed employees broadly for mistakes we made away from them.”

Compensation at the corporate and investment bank, run by Mike Cavanagh, 48, and Daniel Pinto, 51, includes salaries, bonuses, benefits and the cost of deferred pay from previous years. Figures for average pay don’t represent what individuals actually receive and are calculated by dividing the total compensation expense by the number of employees.

Companywide compensation, JPMorgan’s largest expense, was $30.8 billion in 2013, up 0.7 percent from a year earlier.

--Editors: Peter Eichenbaum, Steven Crabill