JPMorgan's Dimon, in Shareholder Letter, Calls for Regulatory Changes

Business Leaders Reuters

 Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan Chase & Co, <JPM.N> on Tuesday devoted one-third of his annual letter to shareholders to arguments for changing regulations, particularly those on bank capital and liquidity, as well as home mortgage loan financing.

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Dimon said that current regulations are inconsistent and have left banks with "too much capital," some of which could be used to "finance the economy without sacrificing safety."

The 17,349-word letter, released on Tuesday, also warned that anti-trade policies could be disruptive and that geopolitical risks are in a "heightened state."

Dimon, 61, and in his twelfth year as chief executive of JPMorgan, considers his letters to be among his most important public statements each year about public policy and his company. They are widely read because the bank is among the most profitable and came out of the financial crisis stronger than competitors.

Dimon argued in his letter that the too-big-to-fail problem, in which the government had to bail out banks with tax dollars to keep them from crippling the economy, "has been solved." He said "taxpayers will not pay if a bank fails" because of measures enacted since the financial crisis nearly a decade ago.

Dimon's comments on bank regulation come at a time of possible flux in rules and laws. Some members of Congress are trying to change a law that they say leaves taxpayers at risk because of provision for possible government financing of assets while a bank is being dismantled or recapitalized.

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In addition, the U.S. Federal Reserve governor who has been overseeing regulation, including bank capital stress tests, is leaving his post on Wednesday and a replacement has yet to be proposed by President Trump.

Dimon said that the way the Fed conducts stress tests should be clearer and more consistent. "We don't completely understand the Fed's assumptions and models," Dimon wrote.

 

(Reporting by David Henry in New York; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Dan Grebler)