JPMorgan Has Plan To Sell Highbridge If Volcker Rule Passes

Apr 21 2010 | 2:28am ET

JPMorgan Chase—the world’s largest hedge fund manager—has drawn up plans to sell Highbridge Capital Management in the event that new restrictions on banks owning hedge funds becomes law.

The New York-based firm is lobbying hard against the so-called “Volcker rule,” which would bar bank holding companies like JPMorgan from owning, investing in or sponsoring hedge funds and private equity funds. The rule, named for former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, has been championed by President Barack Obama as a centerpiece of his financial regulation overhaul.

But the firm doesn't want to be caught unawares should Congress, which is to begin debating the reform this week, ignore its pleas. And so it has drawn up a contingency plan to sell off Highbridge, which manages about half of its $50 billion in hedge fund assets, Fox Business reports.

JPMorgan also has plans to sell its $15 billion private equity unit if it has to.

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