In what was supposed to be the marquee takeaway for the banking industry today, JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) reported its Q2 earnings Friday – however it was its Chief Executive Jamie Dimon who garnered the main focus after he unleashed a salvo at on Washington DC bureaucrats.
The Trump administration and Congress have not exactly been the most popular entities in the United States over the first six months of the year – approval ratings for the president and Congress have continued to hover near record lows. While Mr. Dimon’s scorn is not reserved for only the current administration, his comments are certainly emblematic of a broader issue in the United States, i.e. stagnated economic growth and the inaction of both political parties.
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Indeed, the US economy has grown at a steady rate with its GDP growth and other economic indicators easily on par with the rest of the developed world. JPMorgan has also seen a healthy turnaround since the depths of the financial crisis. However, Mr. Dimon believes this growth has come in spite of seemingly inept leadership in Washington DC.
His frustration reached a quick boiling point during a scheduled Q2 2017 conference call today when he proclaimed: “It’s almost an embarrassment to be an American citizen traveling around the world and listening to the stupid s*** we have to deal with in this country.”
He ultimately drove the point home in regard to an analyst query, also touching on a degenerative trend of hyper partisanship and handicapped US growth: “What I’m saying is it would be much stronger growth had we made intelligent decisions and that gridlock, and thank you for pointing it out because I’m going to be a broken record until this gets done, we are unable to build bridges, unable to build airports, not graduating.”
Mr. Dimon is not exactly towing an optimistic line about the future either, especially regarding his conversations and meetings with other leaders worldwide. “I was just in France, in Argentina, Israel, Ireland we met with the Prime Minister of India and China it’s amazing to me that every single one of those countries understands that practical policies to promote business growth is good for the average citizens of those countries for jobs and wages and somehow this great American free enterprise system we no longer get it,” he lamented.