JPMorgan Mulls Sale of Commodities Unit


JPMorgan is considering selling part of its commodities business.

The bank is considering a “full range of options” for the unit, which trades in oil, natural gas and base metals such as copper. The lender is also mulling a spin-off or a partnership as alternatives, the bank said in a statement Friday.

JPMorgan will continue to offer other banking services in the commodities market, in areas such as financial derivatives trading.

Spokesman Brian Marchiony said the decision was driven by several factors, including the potential of new regulations.

Wall Street banks are facing increased scrutiny over their involvement in businesses that store and transport commodities such as oil.

A Senate committee on Tuesday conducted a hearing into whether banks should be allowed to control power plants, warehouses and oil refineries.

Timothy Weiner, an executive at brewer MillerCoors, told lawmakers at the hearing that regulators, including the Federal Reserve, should strengthen their oversight of bank activities in the market for aluminum and other base metals.