How JPMorgan and BlackRock are thinking of playing fund manager M&A

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  • Top brass from JPMorgan and BlackRock, among the firms to kick off earnings season with their results, said Tuesday that they expect more consolidation in the wealth- and asset-management industries.
  • Pressures on money managers have fueled a flurry of acquisitions in those areas this year, and analysts questioned executives about their own deal ambitions, albeit coming from different corners of the market. 
  • JPMorgan boss Jamie Dimon said the bank would be “very interested” in deals in that space, and BlackRock finance chief Gary Shedlin said the firm was focused on targets that could expand its technology, global distribution, and private markets capabilities.
  • Last week, Morgan Stanley said it would buy investment manager Eaton Vance in a deal valued at $7 billion just days after it closed on its E-Trade acquisition. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Top brass at the world’s largest asset manager and largest US bank told analysts on Tuesday that they expect more mergers and acquisitions in the wealth- and asset-management industries, and signaled both firms are on the prowl. 

On the back of Morgan Stanley’s $7 billion deal for Eaton Vance last week, analysts peppered JPMorgan and BlackRock executives with questions about their appetites for deals during their respective third-quarter calls, which helped kick off the latest earnings season. 

“Well, since we have you all on the line, our doors, our lines are wide open. We would be very interested, and we do think you’ll see consolidation of the business,” JPMorgan Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said. 

“But we’re not going to be more specific than that,” he said, adding there were considerations around what type of deal would make sense for the largest US bank by assets, like technology, product, and execution. 

Dimon emphasized early this year that he was interested in carrying out more

‘What Tech Calls Thinking’ Might Really Be Something Else

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Dropping out of college is also, in Daub’s view, “elitism that very visibly snubs the elite … while nevertheless basking in its glow.” In the case of Elizabeth Holmes, the disgraced founder of the fraudulent blood-testing company Theranos, “dropping out” of Stanford actually meant dropping in to real money. After all, Holmes decamped from Stanford and coaxed $1 million out of a superrich family friend. Rather than turning to the loose freethinking that she might have found in books and liberal arts seminars, she made a beeline for the rat race of consumerism and greed that Leary and his ilk believed sucked the soul out of you. So much for “dropping out.”

Daub brings the same sharp eye for sophistry to other forms of palaver that move capital in Silicon Valley. He revisits the actual thinkers appropriated by TED bloviators, from the philosopher Marshall McLuhan to the French historian René Girard to the novelist Ayn Rand. In some cases, he finds that cruel windbags like Thiel have distorted what were once good ideas. In others, such as Rand, he finds the ideas were not good to begin with.

As a humanist who arrived at Stanford as a relative innocent in 2008, Daub brings a Tocqueville-like perspective to what passes for philosophy in the Valley. For people who’ve spent time at start-ups there’s almost a high that comes from seeing its thinking so adroitly defamiliarized.

But because Daub leads so fiercely with his feminist bona fides — he’s the director, after all, of both Stanford’s Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research and its feminist, gender and sexuality studies program — it’s disappointing, almost insulting, that he ignores the robust critique of tech’s dominant discourse that has come from women. Women sidelined by the Silicon Valley juggernaut have become especially vocal