U.S. probe into JPMorgan hiring practices widens: Bloomberg

HONG KONG Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:02pm EDT

The lobby of JP Morgan headquarters is photographed through it's front doors in New York May 11, 2012. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

The lobby of JP Morgan headquarters is photographed through it's front doors in New York May 11, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Eduardo Munoz

HONG KONG (Reuters) - U.S. government investigations into the hiring practices of JPMorgan (JPM.N) in China have uncovered evidence including a spreadsheet that links hires to specific deals, Bloomberg News reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

The Justice Department has joined the Securities and Exchange Commission in looking into whether JPMorgan hired people in China because their family members would in turn offer business to the bank, the report said, citing one of the people.

The probe, which had initially centered on the bank's Hong Kong office, has also widened to include countries across Asia and more than 200 interns and full-time staff, according to the Bloomberg report.

The investigation could see the U.S. bank charged under the Foreign Corrupt Practices act, which prevents companies from paying cash or providing anything of value to government employees in order to win business.

While banks have always sought to hire staff with influential connections to government and clients, a practice which is not illegal, the probe centers on so-called sham roles in which the employee is taken on purely for those connections and does little or no other work for the bank.

Marie Cheung, a JPMorgan spokeswoman based in Hong Kong, referred Reuters to a previous comment saying the bank is cooperating fully with regulators and declined to comment further.

Press officers for the SEC and Justice department did not immediately respond to messages left when contacted outside U.S. business hours.

(Reporting by Lawrence White in HONG KONG; Additional reporting by Douwe Miedema in WASHINGTON; Editing by Ryan Woo)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (2)
chekovmerlin wrote:
Shocking! Just shocking! Just like I’m shocked that there is gambling and prostitution in Las Vegas and Reno. Shocking!

Aug 28, 2013 12:45am EDT  --  Report as abuse
CountryPride wrote:
They need to add on top of that an investigation into why they continue to allow 20-30% increases of children of corrupt Chinese businessmen and government officials into our universities every year which just make tuition costs continue to rise and steal seats from our own native students!

Aug 28, 2013 12:55am EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

Track China's Leaders