JPMorgan's US investment banking fees are down nearly 50% this year, and it's been paring back recruitment accordingly, but after an unusually high number of exits it also needs to recruit. And there are signs that it's scouring unusual sources of talent.
Two of the bank's most recent US hires are for its mid-market healthcare team. Neither come from bulge bracket competitors. Instead, JPM has hired Matt Wedge from Houlihan Lokey as an MD in middle market healthcare services and Scott Friar from Aspire Dental (a dental group whose motto appears to be 'Live Happy, Lead Bravely, Create Greatness,' with no apparent reference to teeth).
The new recruits come as JPMorgan is seeking to increase its penetration with US middle market firms in the hope that it can cross-sell all sorts of products to them. Bank of America and Goldman Sachs have been busy executing a similar strategy.
It's not clear whether Wedge and Friar will be meeting at the coffee machine: Friar is based in Denver; Wedge is possibly in Dallas.
Search firm Sheffield Haworth says the recruitment of senior investment bankers in America was down 16% in the first half of 2022 versus the same period of 2021, but was on a par with 2020. After a record year for senior banker recruitment in 2021, Sheffield Haworth also says JPMorgan has pulled back on hiring this year. However, the bank needs some replacement recruits: nine senior bankers left in the first half and only two joined. Two of the exits, Rakesh Mehta and Najeeb Ali joined Centerview's medtech group. In June, JPMorgan hired Doug Solomon from Barclays to lead coverage of medical device companies in North America.
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