You may have heard that JPMorgan Chase & Co. is paying a lot of people billions of dollars to settle those people’s lawsuits over bad mortgages that Washington Mutual sold them back in the day. Some people think that this is unfair to JPMorgan, since it wasn’t selling the bad mortgages,* WaMu was. Why should JPMorgan pay for the sins of WaMu?
Well, because it bought WaMu, is the reasonable answer. When you buy a company you assume its liabilities. “There are always uncertainties in deals,” notorious bank-hater Jamie Dimon once said. “Our eyes are not closed on this one.” This one being WaMu.**