JPMorgan Seeks To Kick Out Whistleblower Suit

Reuters reports that JPMorgan Chase has asked a Manhattan federal court to kick out a lawsuit filed by top private banker Jennifer Sharkey, who claims she was fired after urging the bank to cut its ties with a client of longstanding who generated some $600,000 in fees annually.

Ms Sharkey claims that she was dismissed just 6 days after the bank resisted her calls to disassociate itself from the client. The bank has asked that the case be kicked on the basis that it cannot be brought under Sarbanes Oxley whistleblower protection as the firm itself has not be accused of any wrongdoing. Ms Sharkey is seeking reinstatement, back pay and damages.

In the meantime, Bloomberg reports that, according to unnamed 'investors with knowledge of the situation', John Paulson's Advantage fund dropped 6.9% in the first 3 weeks of May, dragging the fund into loss-making territory for the year (3.3%).

And Reuters also reports that UK market regulator The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has launched its own probe into Gartmore fund manager Guillaume Rambourg, who was suspended (and subsequently reinstated) for alleged breaches of internal guidelines. Gartmore has confirmed that it is to apply for a licence to reappoint the fund manager 'subject to a satisfactory outcome of the FSA investigation'.

The New York Times Deal Book column reports that the collapse of the $30bn + sale of AIG's AIA Asian unit to Prudential will see the loss of hundreds of millions in M&A and underwriting fees that would have been paid to the likes of Blackstone, Citi, Credit Suisse, Goldman HSBC, JPMorgan and Lazard.

Some solace will be found in the news, however, that JPMorgan (together with Bank of America Merrill Lynch) look like being in the frame to be co-managers of the much-anticipated General Motors IPO, which is expected to come with a $300m underwriting fee.

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