Updated Apr 4, 2019

JPMorgan's Jamie Dimon: "The American dream is alive — but fraying"

Mike Allen, author of AM

Jamie Dimon. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

JP Morgan Chase chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon says in his annual shareholders letter that capitalism has flaws but is better than socialism, which "would be as much a disaster for our country as it has been in the other places it’s been tried." [Updated]

  • "Socialism inevitably produces stagnation, corruption and often worse," Dimon writes.
  • "I am not an advocate for unregulated, unvarnished, free-for-all capitalism. (Few people I know are.) But we shouldn’t forget that true freedom and free enterprise (capitalism) are, at some point, inexorably linked."

Dimon also wrote: "CEOs can and should get involved — particularly when they or their companies can uniquely help design policies that are good for America."

  • "[W]hile almost all companies can help further job skills, training, and diversity and inclusion efforts, each company can also add value where it has distinct capabilities, like expertise around healthcare, infrastructure or technology."

JPMorgan also announced today that Heather Higginbottom, a former top Obama administration official, will join the corporate responsibility team in May to lead a new global public policy effort.

  • Higginbottom, most recently COO of CARE USA, was deputy secretary of state, deputy director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, and deputy director of the White House Domestic Policy Council.
  • Dimon wrote: "We believe the best way to scale programs that we have seen work in cities, states and countries around the globe is to develop actionable public policies that allow more people to benefit from economic growth."

Read the letter.

Go deeper

Updated 4 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Esper catches White House off guard with opposition to military use, photo op

Defense Secretary Mark Esper said at a press briefing Wednesday that he does not currently support invoking the Insurrection Act, an 1807 law that permits the president to use active-duty troops on U.S. soil, in order to quell protests against racial injustice.

Why it matters: President Trump threatened this week to deploy military forces if state and local governments aren't able to squash violent protests. Axios reported on Tuesday that Trump is backing off the idea for now, but that he hasn't ruled it out.

Updates: George Floyd protests continue for 9th day

Demonstrators march on Pennsylvania Avenue on June 3. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Largely peaceful protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Wednesday, marking nine straight days of demonstrations.

The latest: As several major cities moved to lift curfews, NYPD officers "aggressively" dispersed large crowds in Brooklyn and Manhattan beyond New York City's 8 p.m. curfew, per the New York Times. The National Guard was stationed outside many protests Wednesday night, including in Hollywood and Atlanta.

Trump hits back at Mattis: "I gave him a new life"

President Trump speaks at the White House. Photo: Doug Mills - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump unloaded on his former defense secretary via Twitter on Wednesday, hours after James Mattis condemned him for making a "mockery of our Constitution" in his response to mass protests in the wake of George Floyd's killing.

What he's saying: "Probably the only thing Barack Obama & I have in common is that we both had the honor of firing Jim Mattis, the world’s most overrated General. I asked for his letter of resignation, & felt great about it. His nickname was 'Chaos', which I didn’t like, & changed it to 'Mad Dog'"