"JPMorgan Chase JPM -3.22% & Co.’s pandemic boom ended with a 42% drop in profits and a warning: Rising inflation and the war in Ukraine pose big threats to the U.S. economy." – The Wall Street Journal, April 13, 2022
On the one hand, CEO Jamie Dimon puts an optomistic spin on the firm's state of affairs.
On the other hand, on the level of action, the bank put $900 million in reserve in the event there are payment defaults because of an economic downturn.
At the same time, which seems odd and which governance types are pushing back against, he is requesting more funding for tech upgrades. His rationale is that the bank has to catch up to the fintech folks and more.
Meanwhile, the rest of Big Banking will probably also have to absorb a hit to profits. After all, in the lucrative niches of IPOs and Mergers & Acquisitions, volume is down.
So, what could be up for law firms? Already, with dealmaking taking a hit there is talk from Reuters Legal about associate layoffs. As is well known, junior associates, not of as much value to the firm as more seasoned midlevel and senior associates, have been awarded nosebleed salaries. Those are a fixed expense. For a while now they have been warned by consultants to the legal industry how vulnerable they are.
In this volatile world things could change abruptly. And not for the better.
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