The Fabulous Life Of The Bank CEO Who Never Loses: Jamie Dimon

jamie dimon tufts

Photo: Wikipedia

JP Morgan smashed earnings estimates last week, as other banks have seriously struggled in the first half of 2011.That makes Jamie Dimon, the bank’s CEO, man of the moment.

The thing is… Dimon is often man of the moment.

When you look back at his life, there’s a trend, and it’s not hard to see: Jamie Dimon comes out on top, every time.

Even when he gets fired…

Dimon, a twin, was born with finance in his blood and grew up on Long Island in a modest family home

In 1956, Mrs. Themis Dimon gave birth to twin boys Jamie and Ted Jr. They already had an older brother.

Dimon's dad was a stockbroker. And his grandfather, a Greek immigrant, also worked in finance.

Source: Last Man Standing

The modest life didn't last long: the family moved from Queens to the Upper East Side on Park Avenue

Dimon went to public school in Queens until he was in the fifth grade, then his family decamped to Manhattan.

Source: Last Man Standing

Once he arrives on the Upper East Side, the athlete and ladies' man attended Browning: a private, all boys high school

At Browning Dimon played varsity soccer, basketball and baseball. Apparently his nickname was 'Mad Dog.' Amazing.

Dimon was also a bit of a ladies' man. 'In senior year, he majored in his girlfriend,' a pal said.

Souce: Last Man Standing

He was rejected by Brown but scored a place at Tufts, where he wrote a thesis that got him in the door with Sandy Weill

Dimon graduated summa cum laude from Tufts with majors in psychology and economics.

He used a thesis he wrote about a business deal involving his father and Sandy Weill (who knew Dimon's family socially) to land a summer gig at Weill's Hayden Stone. Weill then became Dimon's mentor.

Source: Last Man Standing.

Dimon was in the same MBA class as GE's Jeff Immelt, plus hedge fund managers Seth Klarman and Steven Mandel, and another special person: his future wife, Judy.

Immelt once said: 'Judy was by far the best-looking, sexiest, and smartest girl in the class, and Jamie got to her first.' They now have three beautiful daughters together.

He graduated as a Baker Scholar -- which is the top academic honour at Harvard Business School, given only to the top 5% of the graduating MBA class.

Source: Last Man Standing

Dimon is so in-demand after Harvard he turns down offers from Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers, instead going to work with mentor Sandy Weill at Amex, and eventually taking over Citi

Dimon got fired from Citi by Weill, but then gets the job as CEO of Bank One in 2000 and doubled its value in four years

Weill fired Dimon in 1998 after a huge tension build-up. rumours were that the straw that broke the camel's back was tension with Weill's daughter who worked for the company.

He was made CEO of Bank One two years later, and doubled the value of the company within four years.

Source: NY Mag

Dimon then convinced JP Morgan's CEO to buy Bank One, and one year after the merger, Dimon became CEO of JP Morgan

When JP Morgan bought Bank One for $58 billion, Dimon was made President and COO.

He became CEO one year later.

He steered JP Morgan through the financial crisis with serious cool, picking up two banks along the way

With less dodgy mortgage-related products on its books than the other banks on Wall Street, under Dimon, JP Morgan emerged from the crisis better than any other bank.

Dimon picked up Bear Stearns for $260 million in a firesale -- called 'the best deal ever' as Bear was once worth $11.7 billion. Plus, JP Morgan acquired WaMu for $1.9 billion, making it the country's biggest bank.

In the wake of the crisis, Dimon became Obama's banker BFF for a while, sending him to national prominence and now his name is mentioned as possible treasury secretary

Dimon's name was floated as a potential successor to Tim Geithner as Treasury Secretary in 2008, and since then, with rumours swirling that Geithner is set to leave when the debt crisis gets solved, Dimon's name has popped up again.

JD's alleged love affair with Obama was also well publicized.

Jamie and his family lived in a beautiful multi-million dollar mansion in Chicago when he was in charge of Bank One

The 15,000-sq-ft mansion has eight bedrooms, nine full bathrooms and was built in 1870.

It also has an exercise room, two kitchens and 900-sq-ft rooftop terrace.

He sold it for $6.95 million.

He was played by silver-fox Bill Pullman in the HBO version of Too Big To Fail

Not a bad on-screen presence. In fact, quite a compliment. Actually, Dimon gets compliments on his looks quite frequently (which is funny, as Dimon apparently never gives compliments to anyone.)

Graydon Carter, Vanity Fair's CEO, put it like so: 'JPMorgan Chase C.E.O. Jamie Dimon is tall. He's fit. For a banker, he's nice-looking. And he's got that head of fluffy white, unbankerish hair. You could argue that Dimon's single greatest asset is that he doesn't look like Dick Fuld.'

He's loved by Politicos from New York to London

While other banks are flailing in 2011, Dimon has led JP Morgan to an awesome two quarters

Dimon's bank recorded a solid 'beat' in Q2, with revenue of $26.7 billion, ahead of estimates of $24.91 billion.

Meanwhile, competitors like Bank of America and Goldman Sachs, are flailing. BofA beat earnings but the stock has been tanking on mortgage-related issues, and Goldman totally missed estimates last quarter.

Jamie's life ain't bad, but we're not sure if it beats this guy's...

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