Once a highly respected banking operation, JPMorgan lost a lot of regard during the bad banking years -- investment gurus were going after Morgan and most other banks as far back as the Reagan administration (and maybe earlier). Investors were warned about banks and their mortgage derivative operations in the early 1990's and earlier. So it's going to be a long climb back into respectability for even the oldest and formerly most respectable banking corporations and -- this is key -- their boards. Not to mention banks in general and right across the map.
JPMorgan's board appears to have taken something like a giant step, albeit a symbolic giant step.
Shortly after the markets closed on Tuesday afternoon, an emissary from JPMorgan Chase’s board of directors walked two flights down to the 48th-floor corner office of the bank’s chief executive, Jamie Dimon, to deliver a stark message. The board had voted to slash Mr. Dimon’s annual compensation for 2012 by half.
At first blush, the move appeared to be a stinging rebuke of Mr. Dimon for his failures of leadership that contributed to the bank’s multibillion-dollar trading loss last year.
But the pay cut was actually a message from the board to regulators and worried investors that it was a strong watchdog over the nation’s largest bank, according to several people with knowledge of the matter. ...NYT
Dimon wasn't shocked. In fact, he admitted his respect for their decision in light of the trading losses -- losses in investments (again!) in derivatives.
In the end, the Times also sees a board that is more deeply implicated in the losses than they'd like to admit. And the "slash" in Dimon's compensation doesn't touch the the $263M he has already accumulated in stock value, or the annual take-home pay of $1.5M.