'This is childish': JPMorgan CEO blasts Congress for not passing another round of economic stimulus as COVID-19 surges

  • Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, called on Congress to find a compromise on more economic stimulus measures on Wednesday. 
  • A first round of emergency business funds, expanded unemployment payments, stimulus checks, and more expired at the end of the summer and any replacement has been bogged down on Capitol Hill for months.
  • "This is childish behavior on the part of our politicians," Dimon said, urging legislators to pass further aid in order to move on to bigger issues like healthcare, infrastructure, and education that are all holding back economic growth. 
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The CEO of the US' largest bank by assets has a blunt message for Congress: grow up.

"This is childish behavior on the part of our politicians," Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, said of the Capitol Hill stalemate that's dragged on for months following the expiration of a first fiscal stimulus in August.

"Now we have this big debate — 2.2 trillion, 1.5 trillion — you've got to be kidding me," continued Dimon, who was speaking at a conference hosted by The New York Times on Wednesday. "I mean, just split the baby and move on. We need to help the citizens of America."

With more money in the pockets of Americans as COVID-19 cases surge and unemployment remains starkly elevated, Dimon said, the country can then focus on distributing a vaccine and getting back to normal life.

For Congress, he said, there are larger problems mounting beyond finding middle ground on follow-up stimulus efforts. Specifically, Dimon pointed to infrastructure, healthcare, jobs training, and criminal justice reform as long-neglected areas where policy improvements could grow the economy and reduce societal inequality.

"Let's not act like it's over," Dimon said. "Let's double down and get through COVID as best we can, to help the economic problem. When we get out of it, we've got a lot of other things we need to worry about."

They're not new problems. Dimon pointed to issues like immigration, where there's been bipartisan support for reform legislation in the past that ultimately failed.

"My biggest frustration is that America, sometimes, we should look inside," he said. "Our problems are not because of immigration, China, trade, stuff like that. They're because of our own inability to solve big problems."

"America's leadership is predicated upon its economic strength," he continued. "Its military strength is predicated upon economic strength, and if we don't get it right, it will be bad for the world. There is nothing more important, in my view, than focusing on our own problems in order to take a leadership role in the world."

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