Jamie Dimon’s Rapid Ascension Through the Banking World

March 27, 2015 by  

By Phineas Upham

Born in New York City in 1956, Jamie Dimon was a third-generation stock broker who began his career working for Wells Fargo. It was at Wells Fargo that he worked under Sandy Weill, until personal differences drove the two apart. Dimon left Fargo to join Bank One, which would eventually merge with the firm known as JP Morgan Chase. Dimon’s ascension through the ranks of choice would culminate with position as CEO and as chairman of the board.

Dimon was instrumental in a few important mergers and acquistions that have shaped the financial industry today. He helped integrate Smith Barney with Travelers Group. Dimon also helped in the merger of Travelers Group with Citicorp, which resulted in Citigroup. The company would go on to become a massive banking giant, and it would have done so with Jamie Dimon at the helm had personal tensions not developed with Sandy Weill. Weill resented Dimon’s stature and growth in the industry, and Dimon resigned in 1998.

Dimon left Citigroup and is said to have told a coworker that he would never work for anyone else again. The next job he took was as Chairman and CEO of Bank One, so he’d stay true to his word. Dimon repaired Bank One’s ailing finances and managed to merge it with JP Morgan Chase. He took on the role of president at that point, and then as CEO in 2006.

Dimon was leading JP Morgan Chase during the crisis of 2008. He mostly avoided huge losses, acquired Bear Stearns for pennies on the dollar, and played an important role in the crisis and recovery thereafter.

Phineas Upham is an investor from NYC and SF. You may contact Phin on his Phineas Upham website or LinkedIn page.


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