JPMorgan to get a huge tax break on settlement

Lawmakers and public interest groups are outraged because the bank can write up to $3 billion of its payout off as a business expense.

By MSN Money Partner Nov 6, 2013 6:00PM
JPMorgan Chase & Co. signage at a bank branch in New York on July 6, 2012 (© Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images)By Linette Lopez, Business Insider

JPMorgan Chase's (JPM) potential $13 billion settlement with the government hasn't been finalized yet, but already politicians and public interest groups are crying foul because up to $9 billion of the settlement is tax deductible.

That means the bank could write $3 billion off its corporate tax bill as a business expense, according to Americans for Tax Fairness and the U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups.

On Monday, Americans for Tax Fairness and the U.S. PIRG presented Congress with a 160,000 signature petition asking the Justice Department to add a provision to the settlement that would stop this from happening, and members of Congress have jumped on board, calling U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to do something.

"Taxpayers should not be subsidizing more than $3 billion of JPMorgan’s penalties at a time when federal priorities like education, clean energy, infrastructure and other job creating investments are facing budget cuts. This settlement has to be meaningful if it is going to deter future abuses. I join the 150,000 people today who are urging Attorney General Holder to stand firm and fight for taxpayers and middle class families,” said Senator Mazie K. Hirono, D-Hi.

Hirono is the lead signatory on a letter sent to the Justice Department by five Senators -- Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.; Bill Nelson, D-Fla.; Martin Heinrich, D-N.M.; and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I. -- urging the DOJ to "ensure the final settlement is clear about the tax treatment of the entire settlement amount and explicitly prohibits the tax deductibility of such payments."

And lest you think this idea has no bipartisan report, Senator Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, is in the mix too.

"A settlement has to mean something or it won’t have the deterrent effect it’s supposed to have," says Grassley. "Federal agencies should do everything they can in negotiating settlements to limit deductions.”

At the same time, Congressman Peter Welch, D-Vt., has introduced a bill to the House that would end the corporate tax deductibility of all legal settlements. It's called The Stop Deducting Damages Act.

He also sent a letter to Jamie Dimon -- here's a snippet: (You can read it in full here.)

It was the taxpayer who initially funded the bailout of Wall Street. It was the taxpayer who continues to endure the consequences of the worst recession since the Great Depression. The taxpayer should not, therefore, be required to contribute a nickel towards the fines imposed for conduct that got America into this mess in the first place.

So in case you're wondering why it's taking JP Morgan so long to cough up $13 billion -- this could be one of the snags.

Tags: JPM
Nov 6, 2013 6:25PM
"Taxpayers should not be subsidizing more than $3 billion of JPMorgan’s penalties...
 - End quote

Suggested Correction:

Dimon should have been in jail a long time ago, but somehow he's the bankster sweetheart to many in Congress, so not only will he get away with everything, he'll be paid royally for it too.
"You're welcome Global Economy."

Nov 6, 2013 7:12PM
Knowing Jamie Diamond, he took that letter the govt sent to him read it while he was on the toilet and wiped his **** with it. He will take the deduction because that's who he is and banking is what he does.
Nov 6, 2013 7:29PM
And people wonder why I think corporations are getting away with taxpayer and employee screwing.
Nov 6, 2013 7:38PM
What a hoot! Taxpayers will be subsidizing the fine either through reducing JPM's tax liability or reduced interest paid on deposits and increased fees.  Depositors and savers have received no interest on their monies for the last 5 years including that worthless crap the US Treasury prints every month.
Nov 7, 2013 4:09AM
In spite of the Theme prior to Obama of Self Regulation and massive Deregulation, Tax and Buyless wants everyone to believe that Banks and the Party that made it possible for them to create Scam Derivatives aren't at Fault. They also want you to believe that the Money Changers didn't understand they were creating $500-700Trillion in Junk Debt. They knew all along with their Bought and Paid for Rating Agencies. The Money Changers were Shorting, that's right Folks, Shorting the very same Scam investments they were pushing out as Triple AAA.

Buyless in particular, wants to push all the blame on the working poor when clearly they were NEVER the entire problem nor even most of it. WE could have bought up all the Bad Loans made to the working poor and it would not have EVEN made a minor DENT in the Actual Problem. I know spellcheckers can do the mundane, but the real test comes when you deal with Math and Critical thinking. Their math simply doesn't add up nor their ability to analyze data and it never will. Whether that be concerning Fannie and Freddie total exposure nor their constant push to blame it all on the working poor.

In a real court of Law, this is hardly an unwinnable argument or discussion. On a posting board, it might not get the proper attention to facts but that's the extent of it. We had a problem of Clear Collusion between the FED, Government, the Money Changers, and the Rating Agencies. Intentionally failure to Regulate led to the Great Recession. And the problems were never solved. RBS opening an "Internal Bad Bank" holding $60Billion plus in bad loans, that's just the tip of the Iceberg. Even Fox-Business-Com did an extensive report scaling the size and Scope of this Global Problem.

Nov 7, 2013 7:26AM
Sounds like a nuke testing target to me. Can WE get any more PATHETIC than to just let this cancer keep raging on?
Nov 7, 2013 10:27AM
Glass Steagall was repeal by Republican Majority Vote in both Senate and House. It was then signed by Clinton via a VETO Proof Majority vote. Both parties are at fault.

House Vote#570-1999
208 Republicans voted Yea
152 Democrats voted Yea

Senate Vote#354-1999
52 Republicans voted Yea
38 Democrats voted Yea

Corporations are experiencing Record Profits and Record Cash Hoards. CEOs are experiencing Record Pay and Benefits. Workers are experiencing declining Wages in spite of being more Productive. Meanwhile, the outsourcing to Slave Labor overseas continues. But go right ahead and buy into how tough Corporations are having it. Go right ahead and believe that Jamie Dimon types are NOT, pure outright Criminals. Too Big to Jail, Too Big to Fail, and they are loving every minute of it, At our Expense. How many folks have suffered greatly because of the Jamie Dimon types, way more than most will admit. The effects of which we may never recovery from.

Nov 7, 2013 12:05PM
If you don't think that legal settlements should be tax deductible, fine, but don't single out one particular settlement for "special" treatment while leaving all others unaffected.  That's not proper; it's just more political correctness of picking winners and losers for garnering votes.   
Nov 6, 2013 9:58PM
Tax and Buyless both have this issue wrong. I know it's easy for some folks to give the Money Changers a free pass, regardless of the crimes committed. There definitively was a CRIME committed. Nor was the crime committed by folks to dumb to figure out they didn't have enough income to afford a home.

So if you as a Business person, makes a loan out to someone who you clearly know can't pay it back, who's the real Fool? That then begs the question, did they already know about Too Big to Fail, Too Big to Jail? Apparently, Tax would run a Business by selling and or loaning stuff to folks whom he knew would never pay him back. So how long would he stay in business? Not long. Nor were these entities Forced to do anything, they did so of their own free will, just as the person did that signed the loan papers.

Fact is this, these Money Changers floated out $500-700Trillion in Bad Debt Derivatives globally yet rated them as Triple AAA. These crooks were pushing literally  JUNK Debt as something quite different from what it really was. That's where BuyLess is dead wrong concerning the $13Billion Dollar fine. The small Fine is more Hush Money than any real penalty. This discussion is way above Tax's and Buyless pay Grade, and apparently it always has been. After 5 plus years of detail accounts of what happen including on Fox-Business-com, some folks just refuse to accept the Reality of what really happened. Those folks can't be helped.

Nov 6, 2013 11:15PM
To those who think Dimon and Chase are innocent and getting a bad rap, I suggest you read the latest Taibbi article in Rolling Stone.

"Chase Isn't the Only Bank in Trouble"

Nov 6, 2013 7:54PM
I await patiently for President Obama to chime in on this matter . . .

. . . something along the lines of "If you like you current tax settlement with the Government, you can keep your current tax settlement."
Nov 6, 2013 11:45PM

You basically have an unwinnable argument or discussion...

And it has been discussed for a long time...


There were unscrupulous Financiers and people pushing paper, all the way to wrapping, packing and selling mortgages that they had convinced investors were worth more then they really were.


There were Real Estators, that many have conveniently left out of the equation...They helped run the prices up on properties to the point of convincing everyone they were investing in their futures and not only finding a place to live...Commercial properties were another story...And they worked to convince the Bankers that the properties were worth it.


Then you had the End Users, or Buyers....That yes, way over extended themselves; Or used their homes as ATMs, margined their homes for other benefits, such as educations or investing; Looking at that possible major gain in a matter of a short time frame or years and they would be okay.


Nov 9, 2013 4:30PM
To Tax and Buyless:
You should read the article "US seeks $864M from BofA over Countrywide loans" about Bank of America / Countrywide, and then tell us all again how the housing collapse was all the little people's fault:
"A jury last month found Bank of America Corp., which acquired Countrywide in 2008, liable for knowingly selling thousands of bad home loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac between August 2007 and May 2008.

The trial related to mortgages the government said were sold at break-neck speed without regard to quality as the economy headed into a tailspin.

The government had accused the financial institutions of urging workers to churn out loans, accept fudged applications and hide ballooning defaults through a loan program called the Hustle, shorthand for high-speed swim lane, which operated under the motto, "Loans Move Forward, Never Backward."

Thousands of loans made through the Hustle program were sold to Fannie and Freddie, which packaged loans into securities and sold them to investors. The companies were effectively nationalized in 2008 when they nearly collapsed from mortgage losses."
 - end quote

Nov 6, 2013 7:39PM
A 13 billion dollar fine for what?  Making loans to dumb Americans that can't figure out how much they can afford.  This is nothing more than our government stealing from the banks.  Stand up America and take responsibility for yourself.   Be smart enough to see through the Obama culture of blaming your porblems on someone else.
Nov 7, 2013 9:48AM
Jaime Dimon from “Hero to Zero”, I think not. The criminal was his mentor, Sandy Weil, who along with his cronies in the Clinton administration destroyed the Glass-Steagall Act thus allowing US banks to swell to an unmanageable size, Dimon is just playing with the hand he was dealt. Dimon has the untenable situation of presiding over an institution that is headquartered in the US where he is a sitting duck for regulators, once they find fault they just keep digging to find more mistakes, mistakes that the government, politicians and regulators are just as responsible for due to poor or nonexistent oversight. If he could pack up his business and leave the US he probably would, but he can’t so the vultures keep circling.
If you study any large business in any industry you will find they all violate federal laws on a regular basis, some by accident some by design. It is nearly impossible for business to operate under the laws that mandate taxation, competition, safety standards, employment and labor practices and successfully police compliance by thousands of employees at the same time. The culprits in this situation are unmanageable size, poor compliance oversight by regulators and a congress that passes laws that aren’t enforced until after the fact.
P.S. My take on "public interest" groups - they would have demanded stage coaches slow down because their horses couldn't catch the stage coach to rob it.

Nov 7, 2013 12:57PM
what is wrong with people??  All taxpayers are entitled to write off's for vaious approved expenses.  If this expense is legitimate in the tax law then it should be written off.   You can't have it both ways.   Either stop the Obama led witch hunt and attacks on US Banks/Corporations, let them earn and pay tax, or charge them and they write off what is deemed a legititimate portion of the settlement. 
Nov 7, 2013 1:34AM
No criminals should ever go to jail, they should all be shot and left for the vultures and worms to sort out.
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