Is fire sale in store as banks exit warehousing biz?

Jul 30, 2013 | 02:12 PM | Mark Burton

Tags  JP Morgan, Henry Bath, London Metal Exchange, Goldman Sachs, Metro, Rotterdam, Detroit, metals assets queues

LONDON -- JPMorgan Chase & Co. understands the corrosive effect that political and regulatory scrutiny can have on perceptions of value better than most participants in the metals market. When the bank first bid for a large chunk of RBS Sempra Commodities LLP at the start of 2010, it valued the metals, oil, gas and power assets at $4 billion. But by April of  that year, Barack Obama’s support for a plan to put a halt to proprietary trading within deposit-taking banks had prompted JPMorgan to slash its bid to $1.7 billion. Rival bidders Deutsche Bank AG and Macquarie Bank Ltd. apparently felt even that was too steep a price for a business that was about to have its wings clipped by former Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker. Fast forward three years, and a Senate investigation into the activities of banks....

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