JPMorgan Chase & Co. executive Carlos Hernandez, the leader of the bank’s investment banking staff and a member of Jamie Dimon’s inner management circle, will retire next year.
The 36-year veteran of JPMorgan has been a counselor to major executives and world leaders and a close ally to Mr. Dimon. He plans to retire at the end of the first quarter next year, according to an internal memo Monday from Mr. Dimon and Daniel Pinto, the president and head of the corporate investment bank.
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Mr. Hernandez, 61, is the executive chair of investment and corporate banking. He joined a much smaller version of JPMorgan in 1986, Morgan Guaranty Trust, which was fighting for relevance as an investment bank, and has run several parts of the bank over the years. Among his proudest accomplishments, Mr. Hernandez said in an interview, was helping build the bank’s powerhouse equity underwriting and trading businesses.
Mr. Hernandez mostly kept out of the spotlight many big-time deal makers relish and wasn’t one to appear on television to claim credit for a big deal. He has a single deal memento in his office: a framed poster celebrating a 2008 offering of JPMorgan shares just after it announced it acquired the failed Washington Mutual.
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Mr. Hernandez said he talked Mr. Dimon into launching the share sale to ensure JPMorgan had enough cash to tide it over if financial conditions worsened. The bank ultimately raised $11.5 billion. Rivals were later forced to raise capital at depressed prices.
“That one, to me, is one I will always remember,” Mr. Hernandez said. “It gave us the ability to come out of the crisis stronger.”
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When Mr. Hernandez leaves, the structure of his group of deal makers won’t change much. Global investment banking co-heads Jim Casey and Viswas Raghavan already run the unit’s day-to-day operations. In 2020, Mr. Hernandez orchestrated a reshuffling of top investment bankers to let the next generation take over.
A widespread market rout has put a damper on corporate deal making and all but frozen initial public offerings. At JPMorgan, investment-banking fees are down by 44% so far this year.
But Mr. Hernandez said all is not lost. Executives are discussing deals and are ready to pounce when the market improves. “One day is good and the next day everything is terrible,” he said.
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