According to a report from Reuters and corroborated by CNN Money, the banking giant JPMorgan Chase has reached a tentative $13 billion settlement over investigations into the banks alleged bad loan and business securities practices.
The potential settlement does not relieve JPMorgan from facing criminal charges for its actions.
The settlement will be distributed as $9 billion in fines and $4 billion in what is being called “consumer relief.” The bank will also agree to assist in ongoing criminal investigations against individuals.
“Although the numbers of this potential settlement may appear large, they pale in comparison to the profits reaped in by the banks from their reckless behavior,” commented Peter Mougey, head of the securities and business torts department at the Levin Papantonio law firm. “More importantly, individuals have lost billions and the economy has suffered greatly because of the behavior of the nation’s largest banks. To date, they have still only been held accountable for a small fraction of what they are actually responsible.”
The settlement covers activities that the bank engaged in from 2005 to 2007 and includes two mortgage businesses that were acquired by JPMorgan, Washington Mutual and Bear Stearns.
JPMorgan has stated that it set aside $23 billion for potential legal expenses, though the bank has also expressed that it anticipates future legal expenses to continue to be a detractor from the bank’s earnings.
JPMorgan posted a loss for the third quarter of this year, citing massive legal expenses – an indication that the bank’s past behaviors may finally be catching up with it.