Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman reveals he had coronavirus

Morgan Stanley boss James Gorman surprised his staff by disclosing in an internal video that he has won his own battle with the coronavirus.

According to sources close to the banking giant, employees were notified via email at 8 a.m. Thursday that their 61-year-old chief executive had posted a 10-minute video to Morgan Stanley’s intranet site discussing a variety of topics and providing a general update on the company’s operations.

But Gorman delivered a little news at the end of the video, announcing that he had experienced flu-like symptoms in mid-March. Despite the symptoms not being too severe, he received a test towards the end of the month which came back positive for COVID-19.

Gorman — who looked healthy in the video, according to sources who viewed it — stated that he has been asymptomatic for a few days and was cleared by his doctors last week.

A source close to the bank said Gorman’s illness wasn’t previously disclosed because he was never incapacitated during his illness and was always in control of the $850 billion megabank.

One Morgan Stanley staffer who saw the video was shocked to hear the news.

“It wasn’t something I’d heard,” said the insider. “But I guess I also haven’t been in the office much lately.”

And there are indications that Gorman has stayed at the helm of the bank throughout his illness.

On March 26, around the time that the CEO appears to have received his diagnosis, CNBC reported that Gorman sent a memo to staff meant to calm nerves as the pandemic ravaged the economy.

“While long term we can’t be sure how this will play out, we want to commit to you that there will not be a reduction in force at Morgan Stanley in 2020,” the memo reportedly stated.

Morgan Stanley stock was up 5.5 percent at $41.52 in early trading Thursday after news or Gorman’s diagnosis and recovery hit the street.

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