Photo: Fox Business
Jamie Dimon was absent last October when the Occupy Wall Street protesters marched from their Zuccotti Park headquarters to pay the bank CEO a visit at his Upper East Side home. No, it’s not because he was at his Midtown office either.
“You know that particular day I was in Lebanon — Beirut — doing business over there and I was probably safer over there, too,” Dimon told Fox Business Network’s Melissa Francis yesterday.
JPMorgan’s outspoken chief executive told Fox Business how he really feels about the Occupy Wall Street movement while he was visiting Chase branches in Florida.
“You know — It’s ok. People in America have the right to speak their mind so you know it was peaceful — and they speak their mind,” he said during the interview.
What’s more is JPMorgan’s CEO said he understands some of the demonstrators’ grievances.
“I said before at Occupy Wall Street there are two parts that I kind of agree with them. The institutions of America broadly defined let us down and that includes Wall Street and Washington, for the most part. I think when you get beyond that and you blame them all equally — all politicians, all business and all banks — that’s not accurate and I think that leads to bad policy. I do think you also have more income inequality.”
Then, Dimon revealed how he really feels about the whole thing.
“You know, but my question is ‘What do you do about it?’ Education, hiring, proper taxation, progressive taxation. I think Washington has a serious argument ‘How do you fix the problem, not just complain about it?’ at the same time while celebrating work, success, meritocracy — let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater in there — that’s what made the country great. It’s a mistake to act like that’s the problem. A lot of people who are really, quote, successful, have been working really hard for 50 years. That’s not something we should denigrate.”
Watch the interview here.