JPMorgan Chases Dimon shares upbeat message

first_imgOn a day when his company’s stock dropped by more than 9 percent in the stock market’s latest drubbing, you wouldn’t expect Jamie Dimon, chairman, president and CEO of JPMorgan Chase Bank, to be cheerleading at a downtown Vancouver employee barbecue that had the trappings of a rock music road tour.But there the Wall Street wizard was, mugging in photographs with employees from Oregon and Washington and signing autographs before delivering a pep rally speech that earned him a standing ovation. While many Americans closed the day anxious about the economy and their retirement savings, Dimon steered to an upbeat message about the future of America and, of course, its second-largest bank.“Eventually this great economic machine will start to turn, and when it does it will blow your socks off,” said Dimon, 55, casually dressed in Levi’s and New Balance running shoes at the parking lot barbecue. Dimon’s Monday afternoon visit to Chase’s downtown Vancouver branch was part of a West Coast tour that will take Dimon and his entourage from Seattle to Southern California. Members of his road crew handed out Chase hand signs, pompoms, bandanas, and T-shirts with the message “Chase 2011 West Coast Road Trip August 7-12.” A huge black touring bus sat waited at the curb. A massive spread of hamburgers, pizza, snacks and drinks filled tables even after the mostly blue-shirted employees had eaten their fill.Focus of criticsThe glossy trappings were in contrast to a sense of secrecy that had shrouded Dimon’s local appearance. JPMorgan Chase public relations officials had provided little advance information about his visit or the larger tour, citing security concerns. Dimon is among the highest-profile of bankers on Wall Street, a man who was widely rumored as a potential candidate for U.S. Treasury Secretary after President Barack Obama’s election, and a lightning rod for the banking industry’s critics.last_img

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