JP Morgan Chase and other big bank stocks are higher today, driving financial ETFs higher as well, amid recent comments from the company’s CEO Jamie Dimon that are supportive of the racial protests following the killing of George Floyd.
As demonstrators across the country erupted into protests over the killing of George Floyd, executives at JPMorgan Chase, the largest U.S. lender, called his death a tragedy last week.
“We are watching, listening and want every single one of you to know we are committed to fighting against racism and discrimination wherever and however it exists,” JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon and Brian Lamb, the company’s global head of diversity and inclusion, said in a memo to employees on Friday. “This week’s terrible events in Minneapolis, together with too many others occurring around our country, are tragic and heartbreaking.”
Events like the death of Floyd, where a black man was detained by a white police officer, “coupled with the COVID crisis, highlights the inequities black and other diverse communities have and continue to face every day and it strengthens our resolve to do more as individuals, as a firm, and in our communities,” the memo said.
To discourage division, “each of us must be inclusive in our work and in the neighborhoods where we operate,” they wrote. “We are here for all of you.”
“This crisis must serve as a wake-up call and a call to action for business and government to think, act and invest for the common good and confront the structural obstacles that have inhibited inclusive economic growth for years,” he wrote about the coronavirus pandemic.
Financials made big moves last week, propelling stock indexes to another day of gains, as the S&P 500 rallied 1.9% Tuesday, breaking above 3,000 for the first time since March 5, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 2.4%, climbing above 25,000 at one point for the first time since March. Markets have struggled since then, as they attempt to continue that trend, with the S&P 500 rallying over 3,060 Monday.
JPMorgan Chase shares are 1.31% higher Monday, after rocketing 8.44% last Tuesday, while Wells Fargo advanced 2.08%, and Citigroup added 2.6%. Last week the JP Morgan Chase CEO called the biggest U.S. bank “very valuable” at the current price.
“I think JPMorgan is a very valuable company at these prices,” Dimon said in answer to a query at a financial services conference about the New York-based bank’s valuation and potential reopening scenarios for the U.S. economy.
The Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF) advance almost 1% Monday amid moves in the financials, as the Vanguard Financials ETF (VFH) rallied 1.04%, and the Fidelity MSCI Financials Index ETF (FNCL) climbed a similar 1.08%.
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