David Fuller's view -
JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon expressed broad optimism for U.S. growth and his own industry if Donald Trump’s administration succeeds in reshaping taxes and regulation. Still, he said, international crises could pose risks.
Addressing investors in New York on Tuesday, Dimon predicted banks will lend more to small businesses, and that employers will raise wages and lure millions of people back into the job market, if the government eases rules and cuts corporate taxes. The nation’s biggest lenders are strong and poised to expand operations into more countries, he said.
“The future is very bright,” said Dimon, who is both CEO and chairman of the nation’s biggest bank. “If you have tax reform, regulatory reform, infrastructure reform, I believe you could see the United States growing much faster.” He said he joined a panel of business leaders advising the president because “the U.S. needs better policy.”
The embrace marked a shift from October, before the election, when Dimon signaled disagreement with Trump’s comments on immigration and Muslims. At the time, the banker emphasized that all people are “completely welcome” at JPMorgan, mentioned his Greek grandparents, and set off loud applause by subtly predicting Americans were about to elect the first woman to the presidency. Those topics didn’t arise on Tuesday.
Instead, Dimon echoed Trump’s frustrations with a maze of regulations that hold back business investments and infrastructure projects.
“Do you know that this country hasn’t built an airport for 40 years?” Dimon asked. “We haven’t put a tunnel or a bridge in New York City for I think maybe even longer than that. You hear the horror stories of how long it takes to build a highway, a road, a grid, a tunnel, an airport.”
Fair points from Dimon on infrastructure and Trump clearly agrees. The question for markets is, will they hold let alone extend current gains if Trump’s stimulative measures are delayed well into 2017, let alone 2018?
Probably not because that would be like running over the cliff in terms of expectations. Trump’s team will not be able to do everything at once. Therefore they need to be realistic and practical in terms of what can be achieved on a step by step basis, outlining a clear plan in terms of what is achievable.
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