“We took steps to make sure those in need, including those without access to traditional banking services, received each round of stimulus payments quickly,” JPMorgan Chief Executive Officer
The two days of testimony will mark the first time top bankers have faced a public cross-examination -- albeit on video -- since Democrats took control of the Senate and the White House early this year. The CEOs are expecting to meet with
That argument has been met with skepticism from lawmakers including Senator
“The big banks and giant corporations made billions in profits during the pandemic and passed those gains on to their executives and shareholders,” Warren said in an emailed statement. “This is corporate greed plain and simple. Instead, we need financial institutions to make the big investments in communities and small businesses that our country needs for an equitable recovery, and it is our job to fight for that.”
Bank of America’s
Despite such efforts, the recovery from an economy nearly shuttered by the pandemic is uneven and the struggle continues for many,
“We are already seeing the shoots of a K-shaped recovery in which some will do better and others will struggle,” Fraser said. “Unfortunately, those who will struggle have been economically disadvantaged historically, and they will need special attention from our industry.”
Among its initiatives, Citigroup expanded access to check-cashing services for non-customers, scrapped surcharges for prepaid debit cards issued for stimulus payments and tweaked policies covering the garnishment of customer stimulus payments, Fraser said.
Lawmakers have also been pressing the banks for more disclosure on racial and gender equality within their own ranks. Fraser became the first woman to lead a big six U.S. bank, while others have begun to report more robust metrics about their workforces and elevated more women to senior roles. JPMorgan’s Dimon highlighted the bank’s commitments toward advancing racial equity, noting that while his company’s investment commitment is significant, “we know there’s more work to do.”
“I believe a core part of my tenure as CEO will be defined by our progress on this front,” he said in prepared remarks. “I believe that we should have a company that looks like the regions and communities we serve.”
(Updates with Elizabeth Warren’s comment in fourth and fifth paragraphs.)
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