As COVID-19 began its global spread, CEO Jamie Dimon publicly worried there would be another great financial crisis. But despite the financial challenges faced by many Americans, the nation’s largest bank remained largely unfazed. In 2020, JPMorgan Chase posted record net revenues of $119.5 billion, though profits sank 20% from the year prior, owing in part to billions set aside to cover bad loans. One bright spot was JPMorgan’s markets revenues, which came in at a record $29.5 billion in 2020 as traders capitalized on volatile swings in the prices of stocks and other assets. Fees from the firm’s investment banking activities, meanwhile, rose 25%. In 2021, Dimon is singing quite a different tune to shareholders: He has predicted a “boom” that could “easily run into 2023.” Indeed, the firm has started to release some of those loan loss reserves it built up in 2020—a vote of confidence that the recovery has truly taken hold.
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