FSC and JPMorgan to meet over settlement

The China Post news staff

TAIPEI, Taiwan — The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) has been closely watching the developments in a settlement deal just reached between JPMorgan Chase & Co. and U.S. authorities.

FSC officials said they will meet with executives of the Taiwan branch of the American financial giant as early as possible to safeguard the interest of Taiwan investors. FSC Chairman Tseng Ming-chung said he had already discussed issues relevant to the matter yesterday with officials at the Securities and Futures Bureau of the FSC, including Wu Yu-chun, chief of the bureau. Tseng said that he and Wu had already discussed measures to cope with possible financial problems. They will also contact executives of the Taiwan branch of JPMorgan Chase today for details of the deal reached by the financial group’s head office in the U.S. The FSC has, at present, gathered only preliminary information about the JPMorgan Chase deal related to global settlement claims arising from its allegedly misleading claims about the quality of housing mortgages, said Tseng. JPMorgan Chase already struck a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice to pay US$4 billion to the U.S. Federal Housing Finance Agency to cover the financial losses sustained by American housing finance agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, according to reports of leading American media like The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times as well as international news agencies. The reports indicated that the eventual total payment to be made by JPMorgan Chase could reach as high as US$13 billion, including hefty fines to be paid to regulatory authorities and compensation paid to investors and consumers. Tseng said that the FSC will get a full and clear picture of the case and then adopt necessary measures if the interests of Taiwanese investors are affected. He said the FSC and the Securities and Futures Bureau will continue monitoring new developments in the case.

JPMorgan Chase was among the multinational financial giants severely burned by the ballooning American subprime lending crisis that triggered the global financial meltdown in 2008. Some financial investors in Taiwan suffered losses from their investments in financial products tied to housing mortgages in the U.S.

Other SFC officials explained that they were unable to reach executives of JPMorgan Chase Taiwan over the weekend.

The officials plan to talk with JPMorgan executives to gain an in-depth understanding of the deal as early as possible, after bankers and financiers return to work today, they added.