JPMOR­GAN CHASE CEO DI­MON RIPS U.S. GRID­LOCK, LACK OF PRI­OR­I­TIES

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS -

JPMor­gan Chase Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Jamie Di­mon, fresh from a work trip over­seas, un­loaded on ev­ery­thing that’s hold­ing back U.S. busi­nesses.

“It’s al­most an em­bar­rass­ment be­ing an Amer­i­can trav­el­ing around the world,” Di­mon, 61, said on a con­fer­ence call with an­a­lysts. He doesn’t like lis­ten­ing to the “stupid (ex­ple­tive)” Amer­i­cans have to deal with, ex­press­ing frus­tra­tion over the na­tion’s in­abil­ity to in­vest in in­fras­truc­ture and over­haul the tax code. “There would be much stronger growth if there were more in­tel­li­gent de­ci­sions and less grid­lock.”

Di­mon heaped his ire on the U.S. me­dia dur­ing an ear­lier call with re­porters to dis­cuss JPMor­gan’s sec­ond-quar­ter re­sults. Re­porters should fo­cus on the ma­jor is­sues the na­tion faces rather than the va­garies of the firm’s trad­ing busi­nesses, he said. The big­gest U.S. bank re­ported record $7 bil­lion profit de­spite a 19 per­cent rev­enue drop for its bond-trad­ing fran­chise.

“The United States of Amer­ica has to start to fo­cus on pol­icy which is good for all Amer­i­cans, and that is in­fras­truc­ture, reg­u­la­tion, tax­a­tion, ed­u­ca­tion,” Di­mon said. “Why you guys don’t write about it ev­ery day is com­pletely be­yond me. And, like, who cares about fixed­in­come trad­ing in the last two weeks of June? I mean, se­ri­ously.”

Di­mon reeled off sta­tis­tics to high­light the na­tion’s fail­ures: Half of the kids in “in­ner-city schools” don’t grad­u­ate; the opi­oid epi­demic claims 35,000 lives a year; and the U.S. hasn’t built a ma­jor air­port in 20 years, he said. — Bloomberg News

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