World News

JPMorgan Secretly Hired Daughter of Wen Jiabao: Report

The New York Times is reporting U.S.-based JPMorgan Chase secretly employed the daughter of Wen Jiabao, who until recently was China's prime minister and main overseer of the world's second largest economy.

The Thursday report comes as the U.S. government investigates whether the bank hired the children of powerful Chinese officials to help win lucrative business deals with the country's state-owned companies.

The Times says JPMorgan paid $1.8 million from 2006 to 2008 to a little-known, two-person business that was run by the then-prime minister's daughter, Wen Ruchun, who went by the alias "Lily Chang."

The report says the bank's Hong Kong executives were aware of her true identity and appear to have benefited from her many connections.

Officials with JPMorgan declined to comment. The Chinese and U.S. governments have also not reacted to the report, which was based on a review of confidential documents, Chinese public records and interviews with officials.



It has been known for years that multinational corporations regularly hire China's "princelings," the children of Communist Party officials, who can provide unique business opportunities and information.

But the practice has only recently come under more intense scrutiny as news leaked of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's investigation into JPMorgan.

In August, the Times reported the government probe centered on the bank's decision to hire the son of a former Chinese banking regulator and the daughter of a Chinese railway official.

The paper says it has not been able to definitively link JPMorgan's hiring practices to its ability to win business, nor did it suggest the employees were unqualified.

Wen Ruchun appears to have had particularly useful credentials. After graduating from the University of Delaware with a M.B.A., the Times says she went on to work at multiple well-known banks, including the now-collapsed Lehman Brothers global investment company.

Using her government-approved alias, the report said Wen also ran the Beijing-based Fullmark Consultants company, which appears to have only employed one other person - a longtime friend of the Wen family.

An internal Fullmark document obtained by the Times said the consultancy group's main goals included helping JPMorgan secure business from a state-run railway group and giving advice on the "macroeconomics policy in mainland China."

Wen's father, Wen Jiabao, stepped down earlier this year following 10 years as premier, a position that put him directly in charge of managing China's economy.

JPMorgan has said it is cooperating fully with the U.S. government investigation.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs