JPMorgan investors are cheering Jamie Dimon’s big payday

By: Jayson Derrick
Jayson Derrick
Jayson lives in Montreal with his wife and daughter, loves watching hockey, and is on a lifelong quest to… read more.
on Jul 21, 2021
  • JPMorgan's board of directors awarded CEO Jamie Dimon with 1.5 million options.
  • Dimon has been CEO since 2005 and faced a notable health scare in 2020.
  • The payday is meant to entice Dimon to remain CEO for a 'significant number of years'

Shares of Wall Street giant JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) gained nearly 1% early Wednesday morning after the company’s board of directors authorized a large retention bonus for CEO Jamie Dimon. The move is notable as the 65-year old all-star CEO is approaching retirement age but he may be sticking around longer than expected.

Dimon scores 1.5M options

Dimon has unfortunately undergone two notable health scares in the past 10 years, including emergency heart surgery in 2020. Investors are natural to assume Dimon is planning to retire in the coming years but the company’s board signalled its desires for Dimon to remain as CEO for a while.

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According to The Wall Street Journal, JPMorgan’s board game Dimon a retention bonus of 1.5 million options. The current market value of the award is more than $220 million based on the stock’s closing price of $149.71. In a regulatory filing, the bank said the special award reflects the board of director’s intention for Dimon to “lead the firm for a further significant number of years.”

Dimon’s succession plans

JPMorgan appears to have put in place a succession plan for Dimon earlier this year. WSJ reported in May that consumer-lending chief Marianne Lake and Chief Financial Officer Jennifer Piepszak are two front-runners to lead the bank when Dimon retires.

However, sources close to the matter told WSJ that the two qualified executives may have to wait five to seven years. JPMorgan’s board is hoping Dimon will continue leading the bank through at least 2026. The regulatory filing also stated:

In making the special award, the board considered the importance of Mr. Dimon’s continuing, long-term stewardship of the firm, leadership continuity, and management succession planning amid a highly competitive landscape for executive leadership talent.

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