US bank CEOs ready to be grilled in Congress by Democrats and Republicans

WASHINGTON, Sept 21 (Reuters) – The chief executives of JPMorgan, Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo and other major U.S. banks are set to be questioned by Democratic and Republican lawmakers on Wednesday on the economy, consumer protections and lenders. position on fossil fuel loans and firearms, among other issues.

In testimony before the House Financial Services Committee, CEOs will tout their financial strength, their role in distributing billions of dollars in COVID-19 pandemic-related aid, and their efforts to boost businesses. loans in the poorest communities and diversity in their ranks, according to statements released Tuesday ahead of the hearing. Read more

Among the CEOs due to testify are the heads of the four largest U.S. banks: Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase & Co, Wells Fargo’s (WFC.N) Charles Scharf, Bank of America (BAC.N) Brian Moynihan and Jane Fraser of Citigroup. They should be joined by US Bancorp (USB.N) CEO Andy Cecere, PNC Financial (PNC.N) CEO William Demchak and Truist’s (TFC.N) Bill Rogers, who run the country’s largest regional lenders.

While such hearings rarely result in legislative action, they are always risky for CEOs, who will be forced to defend their banks on multiple fronts as lawmakers seek to boost their profile ahead of the November election in which the Congressional control is at stake.

The CEOs of America’s largest lenders have “clearly demonstrated the strength and resilience of their businesses, their commitment to employees and customers, and the work of their institutions in support of key elements of the economy,” said Kevin Fromer, CEO of Financial Services Forum, which represents the largest banks in the country.

Democrats are likely to pressure bank executives over fees, the closing of bank branches in poorer areas and how banks handle fraudulent transactions.

Leaders also expect heightened criticism from Republicans, who have grown frustrated with what they see as Wall Street’s increasingly liberal leanings on environmental and social issues. Some big banks have adopted policies that some Republicans say amount to boycotts of certain industries such as fossil fuels and firearms. The banks contest this qualification. Read more

Reporting by Pete Schroeder; edited by Michelle Price and Will Dunham

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