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JPMorgan Chase 'also used Repo 105'

JPMorgan Chase used Repo 105, the notorious accounting practice employed by Lehman Brothers to keep $50 billion worth of debt off its balance sheet in early 2008, the Financial Times has reported.

The use of the practice by Lehman Brothers was uncovered by court-appointed examiner Anton Valukas, who criticized its use as a misleading "accounting gimmick" in his investigation into the collapse of the bank.

It has now been revealed that JPMorgan Chase also employed the practice between 2001 and 2005.

A spokesman for the bank told the newspaper that Repo 105 was not used on the same scale as by Lehman Brothers and the practice ended following JPMorgan Chase's merger with Bank One.

"The transactions were done in very small amounts and were fully disclosed," it was said.

In last week's Lehman Brothers report, Mr Valukas alleged that four senior executives at the failed bank, including chief executive officer Dick Fuld, gave their express permission for misleading financial statements to be put out by the company.

By Gary Cooper