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‘Regret’: JPMorgan chief Jamie Dimon moves quickly to stop China fallout after quip

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“I regret my recent comment because it’s never right to joke about or denigrate any group of people, whether it’s a country, its leadership, or any part of a society and culture,” Dimon said in an emailed statement. “Speaking in that way can take away from constructive and thoughtful dialogue in society, which is needed now more than ever.”

With nearly $US20 billion of exposure in the world’s second-largest economy – and big ambitions to expand even further – the US bank has a lot riding on maintaining cordial relations with a government that’s sensitive about anything that might be construed as questioning its legitimacy.Credit:Bloomberg

Trump gaffe

Dimon is one of the longest-serving and most outspoken CEOs on Wall Street, and this isn’t the first time he’s walked back public comments. In 2018, he vowed at a philanthropy event that he could beat Donald Trump in an election because he was smarter than the president, only to put out a statement hours later saying he shouldn’t have said it.

Earlier this year, JPMorgan won approval from Chinese regulators to fully own its China securities venture – a sign that US financial firms are forging ahead with plans to expand in the country despite tensions between the world’s two largest economies.

One of the few posts about Dimon’s comment on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like social-media platform, came from Shen Yi, a lecturer at Fudan University who has more than 1.5 million followers. “This guy is really quite arrogant,” Shen wrote. He later added: “Looks like JPMorgan doesn’t want its newly acquired licence.”

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Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Communist Party’s Global Times newspaper, posted on his Weibo account, which has 24 million followers: “I bet the Chinese Communist Party will outlast the United States of America.”

Bloomberg

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