Related: London Whale fine excessive and political The charges JP Morgan settled were civil, not criminal, and none of its current officers were penalized by the authorities. Cornelius Hurley, director of Boston University’s Center for Finance, Law & Policy and a former counsel to the Fed, said the large civil fines are the only check on the so-called “too big to fail” banks that rarely face any kind of criminal enforcement. “Bank regulators are under pressure to fill the gap left by prosecutors who are giving large banks a pass for egregious behavior,” he said. JPMorgan was forced to take the unusual step of admitting it broke federal securities law, in a sentence buried deep in an annex to the SEC order. Typically banks and other companies that reach a settlement with the SEC agree to pay a fine without either admitting or denying any wrongdoing. That is a legal dodge that has sparked criticism of the SEC in the past. The bank said it has changed its practices to make sure this kind of loss can not be repeated. “We have accepted responsibility and acknowledged our mistakes from the start, and we have learned from them and worked to fix them,” said JPMorgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon. The fine is a small fraction of the bank’s $2.4 trillion in assets. The nation’s largest bank earned $13 billion in the first half of this year on revenue of $51.8 billion. But the trading loss has been a black eye to the reputation of JPMorgan Chase, which weathered the financial crisis five years ago better than many of the nation’s other major banks. Dimon: Road back to normal ‘scary’ When he revealed the loss in May 2012, Dimon admitted that the bank had been “stupid.” Still, Dimon kept both his jobs despite a shareholder effort to separate the positions following the loss.
Many also felt it was unsuccessful. The Guardians Michael Billington awarded just one star out of five on Friday, calling it a senseless production of misdirected oddity ineffectively staged and puzzlingly cast. Two great actors are left struggling to find their character, and sometimes even their lines, he wrote. There was some praise for the 1940s setting in an English village billeting a band of mostly African-American U.S. troops and for a mischief-making spirit bubbling under the surface of Rylances production. Libby Purves in The Times called it one of the oddest evenings I have ever spent but gave it four stars, enchanted by Redgraves magnificent indiscipline and Jones magical twinkle … hilarious physical expressiveness and drop-dead comic timing. A Midsummer Nights Dream, directed by Michael Grandage, is a youthful, fast-paced production of the magical comedy anchored by two small-screen stars: actress Sheridan Smith and David Walliams, half of the comedy duo Little Britain. Smith, who has been garnering acclaim as a versatile stage actress in plays ranging from Legally Blonde: The Musical to Hedda Gabler, plays the fairy queen Titania in Shakespeares play about young lovers bewitched, bothered and bewildered during a mood-altering summer night. Walliams is Bottom, the pompous weaver transformed into an ass by the mischievous sprite Puck. His broad, campy performance won over most, but not all, reviewers. Paul Taylor in the Independent found Walliams delightfully funny, though the Daily Telegraphs Charles Spencer disliked his smarmy, supercilious demeanor. Walliams crowd-pleasing turn was typical of a confident production, played at a ferocious clip, that gives the magical forest setting a trippy Woodstock vibe. Amid blasts of rock music and bursts of tie-dye, fairy king Oberon (Padraic Delaney) struts around like a bare-chested rock star, while Smiths Titania is a Janis Joplin-esque den mother to a band of sprites. There is also a fair amount of attractive young flesh on display as the quartet of confused lovers swaps sexy invective in the forest. While some reviewers felt the production didnt touch the heart as much as it might, it undeniably drew hearty laughter. Its another winner for Grandage, who has staged a successful season of plays that has appealed to younger audiences through a combination of big-name casting, top-notch acting and tickets priced as low as 10 pounds ($16).