Feb 10 China's top insurance regulator directly
asked JPMorgan Chase & Co CEO Jamie Dimon to hire a
family friend as a "favor," The New York Times reported, citing
a confidential email.
The latest media report comes even as Wall Street's practice
of hiring family and friends of China's ruling elite continues
to attract the attention of regulators. U.S. authorities have
been looking into the hiring practices of several banks and
hedge funds, focusing on those related to well-connected foreign
officials with the intent of securing business.
Dimon met the applicant, described by The New York Times as
"a young woman," in June 2012. At that meeting in New York, the
applicant acted as an interpreter for the Chinese insurance
regulator Xiang Junbo, according to the report.
At the time of that meeting, JPMorgan was seeking lucrative
work from Chinese insurance companies, the newspaper said. It
said the timing of the applicant's internship at the bank may
have had no connection to JPMorgan's business with the Chinese
insurance industry, some of which the bank secured before the
meeting. The applicant played no role in those deals, the paper
JPMorgan told The New York Times that Dimon had nothing to
do with the decision to hire the young woman, who was described
within the bank as well qualified.
"Our CEO played no role in the hiring decision, did not
weigh in, and did not follow up," JPMorgan spokesman Joseph
Evangelisti said in a statement to the newspaper. "It is his
normal practice to pass on referrals without advice to those
involved in hiring."
The New York Times did not identify the applicant.
Neither Dimon nor the applicant are suspected of any
wrongdoing, the newspaper said, citing a person briefed on the
JPMorgan, the biggest U.S. bank by assets, has been
conducting an internal investigation examining the employment of
around 200 people for instances of possible illegal nepotism.
Evangelisti confirmed his comments in the story when reached
by Reuters on Monday.
Officials at the China Insurance Regulatory Commission did
not respond to a request for comment.
JPMorgan shares were down less than 0.2 percent at $56.53 on
Monday in mid-day trading in New York.