JPMorgan not leaving physical commodities: report

JPMorgan not leaving physical commodities: report

JPMorgan spent five years and billions of dollars building the banking world's biggest commodity desk.

JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM), which completed the sale of its physical commodities unit Swiss trader Mercuria for $800 million last month, says is not leaving the business and plans to continue financing metals and crude oil, FT.com reports (subs. required).

In an interview with the British paper, John Anderson and Michael Camacho, co-heads of global commodities at the U.S. largest bank, said that claiming that JPMorgan had exited physical markets was “a bit of a misnomer.”

What we have exited is position taking and the logistical aspects of physical commodities, mainly on the energy side,” Anderson was quoted as saying.

JPMorgan, which announced the sale last March, got about a quarter of the initial valuation of $3.5 billion. The price turned out to be lower because the transaction excluded some oil and metal stockpiles as well other assets. These will now be the new focus of JPMorgan.

The financial institution, which spent five years and billions of dollars building the banking world's biggest commodity desk, has also said it would centre on “traditional” activities in commodities such as financing, hedging, trading warrants on the London Metal Exchange and the vaulting of precious metals.

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