JPMorgan Chase & Co has sold an estimated $25 billion of profitable securities in an effort to prop up earnings after suffering trading losses tied to the bank’s now-infamous “London Whale,” compounding the cost of those trades….
The sales of profitable securities from elsewhere in the bank’s investment portfolio will increase its costs by triggering taxes on the gains and by eliminating future earnings from the securities…
“They really made two stupid decisions,” said Lynn Turner, a consultant and former chief accountant of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The first was taking risks with derivatives that they did not understand, Turner said.
“The second is selling assets with high income that they can’t replace,” Turner added. In a low interest-rate environment, the bank will struggle to generate as much income with the cash it received from selling the securities, he said.