JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon recently said that he felt safer in Lebanon than he did when Occupy marched past his house. If nothing else, it proves that Wall Street bankers haven't gotten any better at risk management - the art of knowing where danger lies and avoiding it - than they were when their bad bets crashed the economy and caused the Great Recession.
But then we knew that already, didn't we? After all, Chase is one of five too-big-to-fail banks that could lose $80 billion or more from their poorly-thought-out risk-taking in Europe's most troubled countries. The risky behavior shouldn't surprise anyone, though. These banks know -- or at least believe -- that their too-big-to-fail status means we'll rescue them again when they make the next devastating set of blunders.
What's really striking about comments like these is the fact that executives at America's big banks never seem to worry when police cars approach their houses. Their biggest fear is that that they might glimpse a sign or hear the sound of a mic check reverberating faintly through well-aged brick walls.
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