JPMorgan CEO says bank rules "anti-American": report

LONDON Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:57am EDT

Jamie Dimon, CEO and chairman of JPMorgan Chase & Co., poses for a portrait in his office in New York, in this photo taken December 22, 2010. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Jamie Dimon, CEO and chairman of JPMorgan Chase & Co., poses for a portrait in his office in New York, in this photo taken December 22, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson

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LONDON (Reuters) - The United States should consider pulling out of the Basel group of global regulators, Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, said in an interview with the Financial Times.

Dimon said he was supportive of forcing banks to have more capital but argued that moves to impose an additional charge on the largest global banks went too far, particularly for U.S. lenders.

He was quoted as describing new international bank capital rules as "anti-American".

"I'm very close to thinking the U.S. shouldn't be in Basel anymore. I would not have agreed to rules that are blatantly anti-American," he said in the interview.

"Our regulators should go there and say: 'If it's not in the interests of the U.S., we're not doing it'."

The Basel III capital rules are designed to increase the safety of the financial system by making banks build up risk-absorbent "core tier one" capital to at least 7 percent of risk-weighted assets. The biggest, including JPMorgan, have to reach 9.5 percent.

Dimon also criticised liquidity rules, arguing that regulations that viewed covered bonds as highly liquid but discounted government-backed, mortgage-backed securities in the United States were unfair.

He added that other details hit investment banking activity core to U.S. banks hardest because of the threat that Asian banks, in particular, could take U.S. market share due to the combination of U.S. domestic and global rules.

"I think any American president, secretary of Treasury, regulator or other leader would want strong, healthy global financial firms and not think that somehow we should give up that position in the world and that would be good for your country."

(Writing by Stephen Mangan; Editing by Dale Hudson)

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