Dimon spoke to Trump a month ago to soften trade policy: ‘We weren’t very effective’

FAN Editor

J.P. Morgan Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon says he tried to persuade President Donald Trump to change his trade policy plans.

“I am the chairman of the Business Roundtable, so we periodically … go talk to him [Trump] about issues that are important to the business community like trade, immigration, tax and etc.,” Dimon said Thursday in an interview with Yahoo Finance. “The last time I spoke to him was a month ago. And it was about trade and obviously we weren’t very effective.”

Trade tensions between the U.S. and China have risen in recent weeks. China on Wednesday announced tariffs on 106 U.S. products, including soybeans, cars, aerospace and defense. The move came a day after the Trump administration detailed the list of Chinese imports that it aims to target with tariffs.

Dimon said Trump’s policies of tax reform and deregulation are positive for the U.S. economy and financial markets, but the president’s trade policy may be a negative headwind.

“We were very honest and he likes honesty. We told him [Trump] what we thought and it wasn’t what he thought at the time,” Dimon said.

In his annual letter to the bank’s shareholders released early Thursday, Dimon backed Trump’s efforts to get more favorable trade terms with China and other countries but suggested the U.S. work more closely with allies to bring China to the negotiating table.

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