Subcommittee Chairs Request Information on Oil and Gas Lending Practices from JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Washington, D.C. (June 21, 2021)—– Today, the House Oversight and Reform Committee’s
Subcommittee on Environment Chairman Ro Khanna and the House Natural Resources’ Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations Chairwoman Katie Porter wrote a letter to JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPMC) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon requesting information regarding the bank’s lending policies for oil and gas clients.
In their letter, the Chairs stated that they seek to find out why JPMC advocated for government relief in coronavirus relief legislation for oil and gas companies and client banks overexposed to oil and gas, and whether JPMC’s extensive loans to the oil and gas industry could put taxpayer dollars at risk.
“We are concerned that JPMC’s lending practices are putting U.S. taxpayer funds at risk. In March 2020, the coronavirus pandemic and price cuts in the international market sent oil prices crashing,” wrote the Chairs. “JPMC suggested that Treasury follow the ‘ample precedent of financial sponsors supporting banks during the Global Financial Crisis,’ including that the government ‘directly purchase troubled [oil and gas] assets.’ Meanwhile, almost one-quarter of Americans—and nearly half of mothers with children 12 or younger—were going hungry because of the coronavirus crisis.”
Chairman Khanna and Chairwoman Porter also emphasized the environmental costs that lending to oil and gas companies creates for Americans.
“In addition to destabilizing markets, reckless lending to oil and gas companies creates billions of dollars in environmental cleanup costs, which are often passed on to taxpayers,” they added. “This crisis is accelerating, with nearly 200 U.S. oil and gas companies predicted to go bankrupt between 2020 and 2022. Congress must have confidence that JPMC will not make taxpayers responsible for the bank’s high-risk investment in the oil and gas industry.”
The Chairs requested that JPMC provide information and documents regarding their business practices with oil and gas companies since 2016 by June 30, 2021.
Click here to read the letter to JPMorgan Chase & Co.