What with the alleged paranoia about bonuses at JPMorgan falling 50%, you might think its London staff would be queuing up to leave.
You would be mistaken. In the current environment, most headhunters say JPMorgan’s woes will make absolutely no difference to its staff turnover.
“There’s so little poaching going on, that - to be honest - this will have no impact at all,” says the head of one search boutique.
“It’s wishful thinking to say that people are going to be getting out of JPMorgan because of the loss in the chief investment office,” says another headhunter. “The only reason they’d leave would be if they were told their bonuses were going to be down significantly - and that’s not going to happen until the third or fourth quarter. And frankly, by that time it’s going to be the same story everywhere.”
“You have to remember the CIO is seen as very separate from the investment bank,” says a fixed income headhunter. “JPMorgan is seen as a very good house. People will only leave for a very compelling reason.”
Nevertheless, there is one dissenting voice in the mix. And that is Dominic Connor, a quant headhunter and partner at P&D Quant Recruitment.
“JPMorgan is going to be a happy hunting ground. It’s a reputation for being political and its bonuses last year were much of a muchness,” Connor asserts.
Other headhunters agree with Connor on one thing at least: JPMorgan is highly political. .
“It’s always been a complete political snake pit,” says one. “JPMorgan is very bureaucratic and hyper-competitive.”
“It’s true that JPMorgan is a very political place,” says another. “It seems to have got worse since Bill Winters left – possibly because London has been managed more closely by New York.”
This is clearly unfortunate: we can only assume that JPMorgan will be managed even more closely by New York in future. It may be come more political still.