US Economy in 'Mild Recovery': JPMorgan's Dimon

The U.S. is in a "mild recovery" that is "broad and strengthening," JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon told CNBC Monday.

Jamie Dimon
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Jamie Dimon

"When you look at all the sectors — corporate, middle market, business, consumer — for the most part they’re better than they were a year ago, and we even think housing is near the bottom if you look at rental prices, supply and demand, household formation," Dimon said. "So I hope we have a growing economy."

He said banks, including JPMorgan , "have a lot of issues sitting on them right now including Europe, which may be the largest of them. We would like to see Europe solve its problems."

He said the European Central Bank's new three-year deposit facility "removed a lot of issues about liquidity."

But the ECB must work with the European Union on its members' financial problems, he stressed.

"It's fair for the ECB to say this is not our issue, it’s a government issue," he said. But it's also fair for the EU "to say we need the ECB to help with liquidity, particularly for Italian and Spanish sovereign debt . There are a lot of issues to work out, and they should be done together and soon, because I think the longer you wait the higher the risk is something goes wrong that you can’t control."

That's important to Dimon because JPMorgan has exposure to Italy and Spain and does not want to leave those markets, at least not yet.

"We've been doing business with Italy and Spain for 100 years. We want to be there for another 100 years," he said.

JPMorgan bought back stock in 2011 and plans to do more of that this year, he said — but at the right price. He wouldn't comment on any changes to the company's dividend but said growth is expected to increase organically, such as from opening more bank branches, rather than through acquisitions.

Update: An earlier version of this report misstated the CEO's name.