JP Morgan boss Jamie Dimon warns of Brexit job cuts if UK backs 'terrible deal'

Bank could lose ability to passport banking services into EU

Jamie Dimon, whose firm employs 19,000 in UK, tells staff that vote to leave EU would be a terrible deal for British economy
Jamie Dimon, whose firm employs 19,000 in UK, tells staff that vote to leave EU would be a terrible deal for British economy

Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Chase & Co chief executive Officer warned the investment bank may have to cut jobs in the UK. if the country decides to exit the European Union in the referendum this month.

A so-called Brexit vote would result in long-term uncertainty for the UK and EU economies, Dimon said in a joint address to the bank’s staff in Bournemouth with Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne on Friday.

The bank has more than 16,000 employees across six locations in Britain, including back-office and support roles in Bournemouth, a British seaside resort 108 miles south of London.

“If the UK leaves the EU, we may have no choice but to re-organize our business model here,” Dimon said in prepared remarks provided to Bloomberg.

“Brexit could mean fewer JPMorgan jobs in the UK and more jobs in Europe.”

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The UK will vote June 23 on whether to remain part of the EU. Dimon joins others who have warned Brexit would push international securities firms to move jobs or activities because some products can’t be traded outside the EU without specific agreements. Stuart Gulliver of HSBC Holdings has said the lender would likely need to move 1,000 investment bankers to Paris because they’re linked to operations governed by MiFID II, the EU rules covering everything from derivatives trading to bond pricing.

What Works

“One realistic outcome is that we lose the ability to passport our banking and trading services into Europe,” Dimon said. “But our clients will still need us to trade within what will then be the EU. If that’s what the rules say, we will need to do what works.”

Dimon said in a question and answer session that some EU countries may require the bank to move jobs to the continent if Brexit occurs. The EU is one of the great “human endeavors,” Dimon said.

JPMorgan has more than 4,000 staff in Bournemouth, making it one of the area’s biggest employers. Dimon said he hasn’t decided to what country the bank might move employees.

“My observation of the facts is that a vote to leave would be a terrible deal for the British economy,” he said.

© 2016 Bloomberg L.P

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