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Morning Coffee: JPMorgan's Paris bankers inundated with visits from global colleagues. Goldman executive's actual reason for joining private equity firm

If you're someone at, say, JPMorgan's headquarters at Madison Avenue in New York, an expensed visit to the new Paris office might appeal to you. After all, the bank has one of the best addresses in Paris, with interlinked offices in the first arrondissement, one of which is a historical monument on a magnificent plaza, and both of which are adjacent to terraces full of restaurants offering the archetypal Paris experience. Your visit can be justified on the basis that JPMorgan now has around 800 people in Paris, and the office there is a major trading hub. Perfect.

While the experience may be impeccable and the rationale watertight, it's causing JPMorgan's Paris bankers a problem. Because it's not just JPMorgan's New York people who want to visit, but its London people too. And people from elsewhere. Possibly on a Friday or Monday so that they can combine it with a long weekend.

“As we’ve become the trading hub for the EU, we have an enormous amount of visitors every day, from the UK, from New York — up to 50 or 70 people a day,”  Kyril Courboin, head of JPMorgan Paris told the Financial Times. "We are starting to have no room, it's a real issue."  

JPMorgan has been here before - not with visits from touring colleagues, but with a lack of space in Paris. For a while in the past, its Paris employees were displaced to a rented office space in a less salubrious area on the outskirts of the capital while they waited for the new office which was opened in 2021 to be built. Paris employees at the time told us it was a "courtesy move" to accommodate London staff whose relocation was mandated post-Brexit. Presumably they won't want to make similar allowances for their travelling colleagues.

Something may need to be done, though. JPMorgan wants to hire another 200 people in Paris and appears to be bursting at the seams. Maybe Jamie Dimon will have to make some regional allowances when it comes to working from home?

Separately, in case anyone was wondering why Harvey Schwartz, the former would-be CEO of Goldman Sachs, got a job in private equity - it was for the upside. Speaking to the Financial Times, Schwartz says his new job as CEO of Carlyle "screamed opportunity" because of the "valuation gap between our firm and other firms, it just didn’t make any sense to me.”


Goldman Sachs' role in Silicon Valley Bank's failed attempt to raise funds is under review by the SEC. (Bloomberg)

British households removed almost £5bn from bank accounts in March as SVB collapsed and Credit Suisse was rescued. It was the first decline in deposits in almost five years. (Bloomberg) 

Bank of America has got a new role for chief information officer of architecture, developer experience and former chief information security officer Craig Froelich is taking it. (Business Insider) 

UBS is studying plans to sell the Swiss banking business of Credit Suisse in an initial public offering. It might keep the investment bank and sell the rest. (Reuters) 

A strategy committee of the UBS board of directors reviewed developments at Credit Suisse between October 2022 and February 2023. In February they concluded that a takeover of Credit Suisse was not desirable for UBS. (FiNews) 

Barclays named Yun Zhang as sole head of macro trading for Asia-Pacific, as it promotes women into key roles in APAC. (Bloomberg) 

Hedge fund founder Louis Bacon was awarded more than $203mn in damages at the end of a bitter defamation case involving a Canadian fashion mogul who variously and falsely claimed that he was a member of the Ku Klux Klan, was guilty of insider trading and was implicated in the death of an employee and in arson. (Financial Times)

Coinbase says the crypto industry is still volatile and that it's still focused on cutting costs. (Bloomberg) 

A UBS banker (who was subsequently fired) who went into the women's toilets at Cannon Street and peered over the top of a cubicle said he was drunk and had vomited and passed out and was just checking no one had witnessed this. His former colleagues are testifying on his good character: "He was always very happy to put in extra hours. He was very diligent. He was one of those employees I needed to tell to do less rather than more." (Daily Mail) 

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor
  • an
    6 May 2023

    To give the full story the UBS banker was cleared by the courts. Looks like UBS acted in haste if they fired him for this ahead of the court case. Maybe they want to apologise or give him his job back or some compensation.

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