Dimon defends JPMorgan's size, breadth

Jamie Dimon

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon defended the financial firm's size on Wednesday, saying "larger does not necessarily mean more risky."

"We are not a conglomerate of separate, unrelated businesses-we are an operating company providing financial services to consumers, companies and communities" Dimon said in his annual letter to shareholders. "Large does not necessarily mean complex" and the mix of businesses works for clients, he said.

In his address, Dimon said another crisis will inevitably impact financial markets. He cited a range of possible triggers for the looming fallout, including geopolitical issues, a collapse in commodity prices or rapid interest rate hikes by the Fed.

He said recent activity in the Treasury and currency markets were a warning shot, pointing to Oct. 15, when Treasury securities moved 40 basis points, as an example.

"The trigger to the next crisis will not be the same as the trigger to the last one-but there will be another crisis," Dimon said. "Even though we must necessarily be prepared for a crisis at all times, we hope a real crisis is many years down the road."

Dimon also acknowledged that the company's stock performance had not been particularly robust over the past five years.

"While the business franchise has become stronger, I believe that legal and regulatory costs and future uncertainty regarding legal and regulatory costs have hurt our company and the value of our stock and have led to a price/earnings ratio lower than some of our competitors," Dimon said in the letter.

The bank is facing tougher capital requirements from regulators than its rivals and has seen analysts ask whether its returns to shareholders would be better if it were broken up, according to a Reuters report.

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