If you go to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York website, and drill down until you come to the page listing the Class A directors, underneath the names Richard L. Carrion, CEO and chairman of Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, and Paul P. Mello, president and CEO of Solvay Bank, you'll see the word vacancy. Until just days ago, Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM), was the third name on that list.
The New York Times is reporting that after six years, Dimon has left the board. His term expired in December; it was his second. And while there are technically no term limits for New York Fed board members, most step down after two.
By simple virtue of the fact that the New York Fed has within its jurisdiction all of Wall Street, the epicenter of American banking and finance, it's a busy place -- arguably the busiest of any of the nation's 12 Regional Reserve banks, which, together with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., make up the U.S. Federal Reserve system.
So right about now, Jamie Dimon must be finding himself with lots of free time. I mean, now he only has JPMorgan Chase -- the country's biggest bank by total assets -- to occupy his time otherwise. How many hours of his day could that possibly eat up? I'm sure it practically runs itself. Here, then, are three ways the banker's banker can fill his newfound downtime, in order of ascending effectiveness:
3. Bring a six-pack by the White House more often
In Barack Obama's first term, the president and Dimon had some serious mutual man-crushes going on. Dimon is famously a Democrat, and he got to know big Democratic politicos like Bill Daley and Rahm Emanuel during his time in Obama's hometown of Chicago, where Dimon worked for several years running Bank One.
Obama was equally taken with The Jamie, having had him to the White House at least 16 times. And in a May episode of The View, the president defended Dimon as "one of the smartest bankers we've got" just as the London Whale was surfacing in all its terrifying glory. (More on that bit of fun in a moment.)
Like so many star-struck relationships, however, these happy times passed, replaced with bitterness on Dimon's part for Obama's reference to Wall Street bankers as "fat cats," being left off the guest list for a White House state dinner, and a rumored "liking" of the Dodd-Frank financial reform act by the president on his Facebook page. Let it go, Jamie. You and the president are true BFFs, even if you're not feeling it right now. Time, and getting drunk together, heals all wounds.
2. Spend more time with his new London Whale therapist
The London Whale derivatives trading debacle, by most accounts, has cost JPMorgan Chase somewhere in the neighborhood of $6 billion. For the CEO almost universally recognized as the best risk manager in banking, this was a severe ego-bruising blow. But after years spent crushing all opposition in his rise to the top, he has few confidants left -- people he could just have a really good cry with.
Yet hope springs. Having worked with such high-profile, mentally destroyed clients as a post "Jar Jar Binks" George Lucas, a de-Tour-de-Franced Lance Armstrong, and a de-Katied Tom Cruise, Jamie's new therapist offers hope that he will one day be able to utter the name Bruno Iksil without going catatonic and muttering "Ina Drew, Ina Drew" over and over.
1. Spend more time each morning on his hair
Let's not mince words: Dimon's hair is the envy of Wall Street. No one can compete with Jamie on this metric. Sure, other banks may boast a higher return on equity, a better return on assets, or a sweeter debt-to-equity ratio, but no other Wall Street CEO can match The Jamie's great gray coiffure.
Many believe it was his commanding hairstyle, more than his command of the facts, that allowed him to dominate Congressional inquisitors in the wake of the financial crash. Hair like that is worth paying more attention to. Just ask Lloyd Blankfein.
People who need people, and great hair
An idle mind is the devil's workshop, and with New York's midnight basketball program closed over budget cuts, we only want Jamie Dimon to spend his newfound downtime constructively. We hope we helped.
This bit of Foolishness aside, if you like the big banks, JPMorgan Chase is a great place to consider investing your money. Great leadership, a year of premium performance even in the wake of an unprecedented disaster, and a demonstrated knack for making money in a growing home-lending sector are just a few of the reasons the house that Dimon built is a good place to be for 2013 and beyond.
Fool contributor John Grgurich owns no shares of any of the companies mentioned in this column. Follow John's dispatches from the bleeding heart of capitalism on Twitter, @TMFGrgurich. The Motley Fool owns shares of JPMorgan Chase. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a delightful disclosure policy.
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