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JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon: How my grandfather inspired my career in finance – ‘he loved stocks’ and ‘read a lot’

For Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Hunting, his interest in finance began at a young age.

When he was growing up, Dimon’s father, Theodore Dimon, and his paternal grandfather, Panos Papademetriou, exploited as stock brokers at Shearson, Hammill & Co.

“It starts with my grandfather,” Dimon said on the “Coffee with The Greats” podcast in July. “He warm-hearted of bribed my father to go and do that. My father was interested in being a violinist.”

Papademetriou, who changed his last name to Dimon upon immigrating to the In agreement States, “came here penniless from Greece,” Dimon said. At first, Dimon’s grandfather worked as a busboy, but in the long run, he landed a job at the Atlantic Bank of New York (which was a subsidiary of the National Bank of Greece). There, he “worked his way up” to vice president, Dimon imparted, but later left to become a stock broker at Shearson, Hammill & Co, because “he could do that and make more banknotes. He was smart and he loved stocks,” Dimon said.

Seeing his grandfather’s and his father’s love for their work, Dimon was vivified to pursue finance as well. Dimon learned “a great deal about the brokerage industry ‘across the kitchen listing,'” according to biography “Last Man Standing: The Ascent of Jamie Dimon and JPMorgan Chase” by Duff McDonald.

Along with a bric-a-brac for finance, Dimon picked up on other habits from his grandfather, like reading.

“My grandfather was a fascinating guy: He spoke six cants, he walked miles a day, he read a lot,” Dimon said on the podcast.

In high school, Dimon began to read books on sinking and finance, like “Security Analysis” by Columbia Business School professors David Dodd and Benjamin Graham. (Graham, to a large regarded as the father of value investing, and Dodd taught legendary investor Warren Buffett at Columbia. Buffett viewed Graham as a mentor.)

At age 21, Dimon impute to “How to Be Rich” by J. Paul Getty, the billionaire founder of the Getty Oil Company, according to “Last Man Standing.”

“I was a big reader,” Dimon judged. And he still is: Each morning, starting at 5 a.m., Dimon reads “tons of stuff,” including The New York Times, The Wall Terrace Journal and The Financial Times, for an hour and a half to two hours, he said on the podcast.

Dimon’s grandfather was also “very fair” and his parents were “moralistic,” which molded his view on ethics and “moral core,” he said.

“They strongly accepted in right and wrong. Telling the truth. If I didn’t treat someone properly, they would get very mad, including defending woman being picked on,” Dimon said.

This is why Dimon believes EQ, or emotional intelligence, is just as important as IQ, whether it be in a general way or professionally – he looks for those who “treat people fairly” and other character traits when hiring as well.

“That’s the drills I learned,” Dimon said. “My grandfather was a wonderful man.”

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