First Horizon CEO points out a disconnect between consumer confidence and lending

First Horizon chairman, president, and CEO Bryan Jordan has noticed some discrepancy between consumer and small business confidence and their spending and borrowing patterns.

"What's happening with consumer confidence, which is measured still [at] very, very high levels and, really, small business confidence at high levels, is not driving the same kind of spending or borrowing that you might expect given those confidence levels," he told "Mad Money" host Jim Cramer on Thursday.

Speaking the same day that First Horizon reported its first-quarter earnings and met, if not exceeded, expectations, Jordan insisted that despite the hesitation, business is still strong.

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"We're very comfortable in our ability to continue to grow loans, to add value to customers, help them identify and capitalize on opportunities that they have, so even if we don't get a significant surge in growth, we feel very confident in our ability to drive great profitability and at the same time improve the returns in our business," Jordan told Cramer.

In the first quarter, the Tennessee-based bank saw a slight rise in loan growth and a major boost in efficiency, suggesting that there is money still to be made despite loan growth that may be slow to come.

And while Jordan expressed some concern about the multi-family and retail areas of commercial real estate, he said First Horizon is on a promising trajectory, especially with the company's recent acquisition of investment banking and brokerage firm Coastal Securities.

"We think it's a great add to our strong distribution network and the product set that we already have available, and we think it'll have significant impact on our profitability over the remainder of this year and going forward," the CEO said. "In fact, we think it adds something like $175,000 to $200,000 per day in average daily revenue."

As banks wait eagerly for word on President Donald Trump's plans for tax, health care, and regulatory reform, Jordan voiced his words of advice for policymakers in Washington.

"I think the key thing for the economy and really boosting growth is lower taxes, and I think just pulling back the impact of regulation a little bit," Jordan said. "If we ... allow people to build plant[s], to make investments, to have less uncertainty about how you might evaluate the regulations around environmental rules and banking and financial institutions, I think all that's good for the economy. And I think if the president and Congress can capitalize on that, I think this economy can pick up an awful lot of momentum."

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