THERE’S certainly one thing you can say with confidence about JP Morgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon: he ain’t afraid of taking the bull between the horns.
Dimon yesterday braved the anger of the masses as he strode onto the campus of Syracuse University in New York, despite a planned protest against his invitation to deliver a speech at a university ceremony.
Dimon – who’s more used to winning plaudits such as Time magazine’s 2009 list of the world’s 100 most influential people than negotiating hoards of protesters – could have retreated into his corporate bubble to avoid the fallout. But instead, he came out fighting.
“Do the right thing, not the easy thing,” he told the students, firmly. “Don’t just become someone else’s lap dog… Have the courage to speak the truth, even if it’s unpopular. Have the courage to put yourself on the line, strive for something meaningful, even to risk the embarrassment of failure…”
In the event, though 1,200 students and alumni signed the online petition against Dimon, fewer than a dozen students actually carried out a planned protest by removing their graduation robes during the address – and his rousing rhetoric moved the 17,000-strong audience to rapturous applause.
And here was The Capitalist salivating at the thought of some good old-fashioned fisticuffs. Perhaps the demonstraters had already exhausted their fury on Goldman’s Lloyd Blankfein?
Are the fun-loving bankers over at Nomura regressing to their schoolchild roots? I only ask after hearing that the bank’s employees set about a number of charity initiatives on Friday with unashamedly juvenile enjoyment.
Along with holding an official dress-down day (wearing “Jeans for Teens” in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust), the distinguished staffers also buckled down to their most important task of the day – filling empty Smarties tubes with their loose change. All for a good cause, though.
If, like The Capitalist, you’re a fan of any summer “sport” which involves plenty of socialising and not too much blood, sweat and tears, listen up.
The annual Taittinger Corney & Barrow golf croquet league began last week on the green at Exchange Square, with 48 teams of finance workers battling it out for the coveted title of best mallet-wielders in the City.
There are still a couple of places open to newly-registered teams, with everything left to play for.
Interested parties should contact firstname.lastname@example.org, while the rest of us will just look forward to the grand finale on 6 July, where there’ll be a barbecue, canapés and champers to welcome in the summer with a bang.
It might not seem like much of a market meltdown when you’re in the middle of a film premiere frenzy on the red carpet at Cannes, but it seems Hollywood director Oliver Stone – the man behind the second Wall Street movie – is a cautious man at heart.
“Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps”, starring golden oldie Michael Douglas and relative newcomers Shia LaBeouf and Carey Mulligan, was shown for the first time in France at the weekend, to rave reviews.
But Stone warned in an interview that the financial turmoil is far from over. “It’s a sensational period when they want to hang the bankers, but I don’t see this system as changing,” he said.
“The banks are going to continue on their unhealthy ways, and I think it’s going to happen again. I don’t think it's going away. It may not happen this year or next year, but it’s bound to happen.”
Doom, gloom and more doom. At least, in the meantime, we can sit back and enjoy the show.