J.P. Morgan Chase CEO Encourages Industry Unity

Institutions of all sizes play a vital role in the financial ecosystem and depend on each other to meet the needs of customers across America, J.P. Morgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon said in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal today.

“There is a powerful temptation in the current economic climate to frame issues as simple stories of big versus small or Main Street versus Wall Street,” Dimon wrote. “But the financial services industry does not conform to simple narratives. It is a complex ecosystem, because there is no other way to effectively serve America’s vast array of customers and clients.”

Dimon highlighted the many ways in which large, regional and small banks are interdependent, with larger banks, for instance, offering correspondent banking services, purchasing mortgages and providing investment services to smaller institutions. These services, he said, help community banks in turn provide the high-touch, specialized banking services that their customers depend on. “The financial services industry, in short, is a story of interdependence among banks of all sizes,” he noted. “Yes, banks compete. But in banking, your competitor can also be your customer.”

Building unity among banks of all sizes has been a longtime ABA priority, and it has become more urgent as the industry strives for meaningful regulatory relief and responds to external threats. “Our biggest enemies are not banks of different sizes. It’s nonbank lending, it’s technology convergence,” ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols has said. “We need to lock arms and stand together.”