Summit News

JPMorgan U.S. private bank to add jobs

Catherine Keating, CEO of J.P. Morgan's U.S. Private Bank, speaks at the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Boston, Massachusetts October 5, 2009. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

BOSTON (Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co JPM.N plans to expand its U.S. private banker force by 10 percent in the coming months as America's wealthy exit banks hit hard by the financial crisis, JPMorgan's top U.S. private banker said on Monday.

“We are investing in people and we hope to add an additional 10 percent in the next year,” Catherine Keating, chief executive of JPMorgan’s U.S. private bank, said at the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Boston.

JPMorgan, which traces its roots to 1799, oversees $350 billion in assets for wealthy clients in the United States and employs 375 advisers to guide them on where to invest their money.

In each of the last two years, JPMorgan’s U.S. private bank added more new clients than ever before. Another record might be set this year, Keating said. “It is a close call and we still have a quarter to go, but it could happen,” she said.

The bank, traditionally strong in the U.S. Northeast, is making a push to find new clients in the Southeast and on the West Coast, Keating said. JPMorgan acquired failed Seattle thrift Washington Mutual in 2008.

JPMorgan came through last year’s financial crisis in relatively better shape than many of its rivals.

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Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; editing by John Wallace