The chief executives of large banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) will meet with President Barack Obama tomorrow as Wall Street urges Congress to end the budget stalemate in Washington.
The White House visit, confirmed by three people familiar with the schedule, was set up by the Financial Services Forum, a trade group representing the CEOs of the 19 largest banking and insurance firms. The executives are also set to meet with Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew and several lawmakers.
The CEOs plan to discuss the White House’s negotiations with Congress over funding the government and raising the U.S. debt ceiling, said the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because details of the meeting were still being worked out.
Most of the forum’s CEO members, including Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon, Citigroup Inc. (C)’s Michael Corbat, Deutsche Bank AG (DBK)’s Anshu Jain and Bank of America Corp.’s Brian Moynihan, are expected to attend, one of the people said.
A White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity confirmed the meeting and said the group would also discuss a broad array of economic issues. Laena Fallon, a spokeswoman for the forum, declined to comment.
Unless the Republican-led House and Democratic-controlled Senate come to an agreement by midnight tonight, much of the government will shut down. Congress will then have a matter of weeks to approve a measure increasing the amount the U.S. can borrow or risk a default.
While many Wall Street firms have kept a low profile in Washington following the 2008 financial crisis, some big-bank CEOs have been speaking out on the danger posed by a prolonged political battle over fiscal issues. In a talk last week at the Clinton Global Initiative, Blankfein warned that the budget standoff was harming the U.S. economy and markets.
The forum was also one of several industry trade associations that signed a letter by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and 250 business groups last week urging Congress to fund the government and “raise the debt ceiling in a timely manner and remove any threat to the full faith and credit of the United States.”
Along with Obama and Lew, the Wall Street chiefs are scheduled to talk with Mike Crapo, the senior Republican on the Senate Banking Committee and Jeb Hensarling, the Republican chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, industry officials said.
Dimon, whose bank faces a series of regulatory and law enforcement probes, was in Washington last week to discuss settling several mortgage cases with Attorney General Eric Holder. In a letter sent yesterday, Senator John McCain pressed Holder to hold JPMorgan executives individually accountable while they work to settle claims that the bank packaged and sold bad mortgage bonds to investors.
“Will you seek to hold any top officer, director or key employees within JPMorgan personally accountable for the wrongdoing?” McCain, the ranking Republican on a subcommittee that probed JPMorgan’s record trading loss last year, criticized Holder’s meeting with Dimon as “highly unusual.”
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