JPMorgan pays $100 million to settle MF Global trustee case

A JPMorgan Chase & Co. unit reached a $100 million settlement with MF Global Inc. liquidators, paving the way for the return of money to creditors and clients of the failed brokerage.

As a result, the trustee James W. Giddens will immediately seek to return an additional $200 million to MF Global Inc.’s customers, according to the statement. JPMorgan had previously returned more than $417 million to the brokerage’s estate subject to certain conditions which the bank released as part of the agreement.

MF Global Holdings Ltd., once run by former New Jersey Governor and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Co-Chairman Jon Corzine, filed for bankruptcy in 2011 after a wrong-way $6.3 billion trade on its own behalf on bonds of some of Europe’s most indebted nations. Most of MF Global’s client funds were held in JPMorgan accounts, and the bank was a key lender to the broker’s parent company before it collapsed in the eighth-largest U.S bankruptcy.

The agreement resolves all outstanding matters between JPMorgan and the estate, its customers and creditors, said Jennifer Zuccarelli, a spokeswoman for the New York-based bank.

If approved by the courts, Giddens projected that distributions to former domestic customers would be more than 93 cents on the dollar, and several percentage points more than the predicted range of 75% and 82% for foreign customers.

U.K. Unit

The JPMorgan agreement secures the release of about $90 million to KPMG LLP, the U.K. administrators of MF Global’s U.K. unit, Giddens said. MF Global Inc. in January settled its conflict with KPMG over which unit owned disputed assets, giving Giddens an additional $600 million to return to clients and creditors.

JPMorgan was agent for a $1.2 billion loan to MF Global’s parent company before its failure, and also lent money to the brokerage and other affiliates, according to court documents released during the U.S. bankruptcy.

The brokerage and parent company MF Global Holdings Ltd. went into separate bankruptcies. The parent is under control of a Chapter 11 trustee. Giddens was named brokerage trustee by the Securities Investor Protection Corp.

The holding company’s Chapter 11 case is In re MF Global Holdings Ltd., 11-15059, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan). The liquidation of the broker is In re MF Global Inc., 11-02790, in the same court.

Bloomberg News

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