FILE PHOTO: A J.P. Morgan logo is seen in New York City, U.S. January 10, 2017. REUTERS/Stephanie Keith
(Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase & Co’s (JPM.N) quarterly profit slumped by more than two-thirds as the coronavirus pandemic and record low oil prices forced the largest U.S. bank to boost reserves to protect it from a wave of potential loan defaults.
Provision for credit losses jumped over five-fold to $8.3 billion in the first quarter, with two-thirds of the additional credit reserves taken for consumer loans.
“Given the likelihood of a fairly severe recession, it was necessary to build credit reserves,” JPMorgan Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon said in a statement.
Dimon had warned shareholders last week that the coronavirus crisis would hurt profits “meaningfully” through 2020.
The pandemic has shut down businesses, put nearly 10 million people out of work in the United States alone and is expected to cause a global recession not seen in generations.
The bank’s net income fell to $2.87 billion, or 78 cents per share, in the quarter ended March 31, compared with $9.18 billion, or $2.65 per share, a year earlier.
Analysts on average had expected $1.84 per share, according to Refinitiv. It was not immediately clear if the reported numbers were comparable with estimates.
Profit was also hurt by a $951-million charge in its investment bank due to a markdown on the bank’s bridge book.
There have so far been more than 1.8 million reported cases of COVID-19, the deadly respiratory disease stemming from the virus, and 115,242 deaths, according to a Reuters tally.
Reporting by Anirban Sen in Bangalore and Elizabeth Dilts-Marshall and David Henry in New York; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Lauren Tara LaCapra