“When you have 13 million people out of work, and you have people suffering and small business suffering, it’s much more important than the Wall Street upheavals,” Dimon told CNN’s Christine Romans. “That’s what we should be worried about.”
Dimon said companies need to do more to help low-income earners and minorities in America. Therefore, he joined a new initiative to work with educational institutions and non-profit organizations in the New York area to provide more job opportunities for Black, Latinx and Asian workers. He said that the government alone cannot solve society’s biggest problems.
“The pace is fast, the world has become more complex, and these problems with education and jobs, infrastructure, immigration, if you fix these things, we will have a much fairer society,”
Dimon, along with City University of New York Chancellor Félix Matos Rodriguez, spoke with the Romans last week about the launch of the New York Jobs CEO Council, a coalition of 27 business leaders that promises to hire 100,000 New Yorkers by 2030 and provide apprentices for 25 000 CUNY students.
The goal of the council, according to Matos Rodriguez, is to build new connections for the school’s students – many of whom are the first in the family to go to college.
“The idea is to build new networks,” said Matos Rodriguez. “That internship will be the beginning of building networks. And then everyone will see what kind of talent there is.”
LaGuardia Community College student Matthew Wilson was one of the recipients of the job program. Wilson, who has a criminal background, earned college credits in prison before being released from prison in 2016.
Wilson enrolled at LaGuardia 2017 and was recommended for the college’s education community and education program. Through this, Wilson was selected for an internship at NBC and worked as a production assistant for the network’s local news channel in New York.
Dimon said that for many younger people, the opportunities to work with large companies show them that “jobs create dignity, better social outcomes and that … there is always the first step in the steps.”
Dimon hopes that the worst of the pandemic will soon be over
During the extensive interview, Dimon also said that he believed that the United States “slowly got the virus under control, and other countries have.”
He praised leaders in Washington for stimulus efforts so far.
“The government did it right,” Dimon said. “You can criticize some of these programs, but I think the administration, Secretary Mnuchin, the Democrats, the Republicans, they did it within weeks. Have you ever seen our government do something within weeks?”
But Dimon also said more government stimulus was needed, adding that it should not be a sense of self-awareness just because the stock market has burst back to life in recent months.
‘We will make it’
Dimon did not shake hands when asked what could happen to the bank after the presidential and congressional elections in November either.
“My job is to run JPMorgan, serve our customers, serve our communities, our countries, etc., and the United States of America. And that’s the job and we will be fine, with a Democrat or a Republican,” he said.
But Dimon said he wanted more liveliness and humanity in all political discourses – a return to people who put land before partisan interests.
“What I really hope for is that every president says we need to fix infrastructure, we need to help with education. We need to do these things right. And do it in a way that creates good and healthy growth,” he said.
The economy can still change forever as a result of Covid-19. Dimon said that JPMorgan Chase will continue to be “very flexible” when it comes to letting people work from home and notes that the bank has about 150,000 people working remotely.
“We will try to improve childcare benefits or let people know where childcare is,” he added.
“I’m almost back to normal today, I like to work, I get a lot more done here,” Dimon told the Romans. The bank conducts temperature checks of employees, offices have new air filters and workers practice social distance, he said.
Dimon, who said two years ago that he did not plan to retire until 2023, did not address the issue of succession planning – despite his health fears and the fact that figuring out who could replace Dimon is a favorite game of Wall Street analysts and investor.
“I feel great, I’m back to doing most of the things I did before. I think people who have a purpose in life are good,” he said. “I love what I do.”