UPDATE: July 8, 2020: JPMorgan Chase is indefinitely suspending its plan to return employees to offices in Columbus, Ohio, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.
The bank was set to welcome up to half of its Columbus workers starting July 13 but reconsidered after seeing a spike in Ohio’s coronavirus infection rate. Cases in the state jumped 1.6% to 58,904 by Tuesday, according to Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg News data.
JPMorgan Chase also aims to return some of its Delaware-based employees in mid-August, the people told Bloomberg.
UPDATE: June 25, 2020: JPMorgan Chase is gearing up to welcome some of its Columbus, Ohio-based employees back to the office starting July 13, with an increase to as much as half-capacity by Sept. 7, the bank said in a memo this week, according to Bloomberg.
The bank asked more of its traders to begin returning to its New York offices this week but said it expects no more than 20% of its corporate employees in the metropolitan area to return before Labor Day.
- JPMorgan Chase plans to ask more traders to voluntarily return to its New York headquarters June 22, a source told Reuters on Monday.
- About 20% of the bank's sales and trading employees have worked from the office throughout the pandemic. The bank wants to bump that up to 50% by mid-July, the wire service reported.
- The nation's largest bank joins Goldman Sachs in returning workers to the office June 22. The investment bank said Wednesday it had begun notifying eligible workers to return to offices in New York, Jersey City, Dallas and Salt Lake City. Morgan Stanley also said it would begin returning its trading personnel in mid- to late June. Citi said Thursday it plans to return 5% of its U.S. and Canadian employees July 1 or 2. By contrast, banks such as Capital One and TD have pledged to keep employees home until September.
JPMorgan Chase rearranged desks and reformatted floor plans over the past several weeks at the bank's temporary headquarters — while construction on a new main office wraps up — to make sure traders can keep the proper social distance. Desks will be marked with red or green stickers to signal where workers can sit, and some routes around offices will be one-way only, a person familiar with the return plan told Bloomberg.
The bank also has reduced capacity in its elevators and instituted an elevator queue system, the person said. Employees will be required to wear masks when walking through communal areas or in elevators and other spots where it may be harder to maintain social distancing.
CEO Jamie Dimon visited employees on the trading floor last week "at an appropriate social distance" before meeting with senior trading managers to discuss the office-return timeline, JPMorgan Chase spokesman Brian Marchiony said.
JPMorgan's gradual phase-in coincides with the New York Stock Exchange’s plan to allow a couple dozen designated market makers to return to the trading floor Wednesday.
Daniel Pinto, JPMorgan Chase’s co-president, said last month he expects trading revenue to increase 50% from a year earlier. The bank’s traders already generated a record $7.2 billion last quarter. They'd far eclipse that mark with roughly $8.1 billion in the second quarter if they hit the goal Pinto is projecting.