Malik Chaabouni, European co-head of credit structuring at JPMorgan in London, is set to join a growing list of senior credit and equity derivatives professionals to leave the structured credit giant, according to colleagues. Sebastian Howell, spokesman in London, declined comment and Chaabouni did not respond to messages left on his office phone, but JPMorgan officials said he is no longer coming to work.
Former colleagues of Chaabouni said he was a follower of Bertrand des Pallieres, European head of derivatives marketing in London, and although more junior and therefore unlikely forced out for political reasons, he may have decided to tender his resignation when des Pallieres stepped down from his role (DW, 2/7).
Chaabouni is considered to be one of the best quantitative structurers in the collateralized debt obligation market. One credit professional said Chaabouni was excellent in discussing and explaining new concepts to the rating agencies and therefore breaking new ground on what types of structures could be rated.
Rivals said Chaabouni was the brains behind the EUR3.5 billion Overture CDO JPMorgan arranged for AXA Investment Managers (DW, 9/29/03). This deal is considered to be one of the most innovative CDOs of last year because it is the first European CDO to be distributed on a syndicate basis and features a unique structure, which uses parallel issuers to market parallel portfolios. Officials at AXA declined comment.
Although he has cemented his reputation as a structurer in the last four years, Chaabouni's background is a systems developer and a credit official said this is where he acquired his analytical skills.