JPMorgan Chase eyes Japan buys, joint ventures -FT

TOKYO Mon Oct 29, 2007 9:18pm EDT

TOKYO Oct 30 (Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) is eyeing joint ventures and acquisitions in Japan to help it expand in the world's second-largest economy, the Financial Times quoted JPMorgan chief executive Jamie Dimon as saying.

Shares in Aozora Bank Ltd (8304.T) jumped nearly 13 percent and Shinsei Bank (8303.T) leapt more than 10 percent after the newspaper said analysts had named the two banks as potential targets.

"I have asked the management teams here that they come up with joint ventures and acquisitions that, if they did make sense, we will pursue. We think Japan will be a great market over time," Dimon was quoted as saying at a management forum.

Dimon's comments come as Citigroup Inc (C.N) prepares to list its shares in Tokyo next month and make brokerage unit Nikko Cordial Corp 8603.T a wholly-owned subsidiary to help it tap Japan's estimated $13 trillion in household assets.

"We clearly would be as aggressive as Citi," the Financial Times quoted Dimon as saying.

By 0057 GMT, shares of Aozora Bank had risen 12.9 percent to 404 yen while Shinsei's stock rose 10.4 percent to 361 yen. The benchmark Nikkei average .N225 was down 0.3 percent.

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