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There was significant chatter over the weekend that an impending reshuffling of the deck chairs at the J. P. Morgan Private Bank is in the offing. The whispers are that the first chair to be ‘shuffled’ could be David Frame, CEO of the J. P. Morgan Private Bank, as attrition isn’t slowing, but rather accelerating on his watch.

An anonymous JPM source discussed the current situation:

“Leadership is trying to present a unified front and offering promises of increased comp and bigger bonuses. But it’s all rhetoric. Anyone that believes that all those promises will be kept without any sort of legal documentation is being naive at best and downright stupid at worst. There are growing whispers that David is in real trouble. The Dallas move in particular has turned up the heat for him. If another group or two of that size walks out in the next couple of months… he’ll get fired, or demoted. He has some loyal MD’s across the private bank, but that goodwill is limited as eyes are continually opening to the compensation holes at the firm.”The source above is still at J. P. Morgan but is very aware of how the moves to UBS and Morgan Stanley have leadership ‘dazed and confused. Once the dam breaks and talent is no longer concerned with things like garden leaves and non-solicit language the model is on the brink.

An extra $100k year-end bonus (to be paid 10 months from now) is nothing more than a band-aid on a bullet hole. When a respected JPM PB Managing Director looks at an offer from UBS that shows them total cash comp of $60-$80M versus a verbal promise of an extra couple hundred thousand dollars over the next few years – as our source said, eyes are opening.

So the whispers will continue, and David Frame’s reign as the Private Bank’s CEO is in jeopardy; as are the jobs of Region Head’s like Elaine Agather. Keep a sharp eye on the next two announcements coming soon… those hot seats are about to get even hotter.

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