- JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon isn’t happy about the way things are playing out in San Francisco.
- The city “is in far worse shape than New York” and needs lower rents to attract workers, he told Fox Business.
- San Francisco’s population fell 7.5% over the pandemic. People say crime and rent are pushing them away.
San Francisco “is in far worse shape than New York,” Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JPMorgan, told Fox Business while in the city for his company’s annual healthcare conference.
Asked by “Mornings with Maria” host Maria Bartiromo about his thoughts on San Francisco, Dimon said: “Any city who doesn’t do a good job, it will lose its population.”
“You’ve seen some cities do a great job … and some cities do a terrible job,” he continued.
Features that make a city attractive include parks, art, safety, jobs, and affordable housing, Dimon said. San Francisco needs more affordable housing so that companies can attract workers and create jobs, he said.
There’s been an exodus of both workers and high-profile businesses from San Francisco in recent years as it battles with a reputation crisis amid a swirl of media reporting on the city’s supposed demise.
San Francisco’s population was around 873,000 as of the 2020 Census. But estimates from the Census Bureau suggest that it fell to about 811,000 in 2021 and 808,000 in 2022, a drop of around 7.5%. People flocked from the city for a plethora of reasons, such as to avoid crime, find cheaper rent, and escape the hustle and bustle, ultimately enabled by the surge in remote work during the pandemic.
Some business owners, residents, and visitors have expressed concern about violent crime, drugs, and homelessness in the city, though the rate of homelessness in San Francisco fell during the pandemic and is actually lower than in Oakland and Los Angeles, according to city data.
Both rent and property prices in San Francisco are much higher than the US average. Households also spend considerably more on food, insurance, and pension contributions, data shows.
But some indicators paint a different picture of San Francisco’s economy. Unemployment in San Francisco has risen dramatically over the past year but is equal to the US average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Census Bureau estimates from 2022 suggest that San Francisco has twice the US’ average per capita income and a significantly higher proportion of residents with bachelor’s degrees.
“The mayor has worked aggressively to ramp up and expand the city’s public safety efforts over the last few years, including prioritizing a recovering economy and workforce,” a spokesperson for San Francisco mayor London Breed told The San Francisco Standard in response to Dimon’s comments. “These efforts have yielded significant progress and milestones.”
A JPMorgan spokesperson told The Standard that Dimon’s comments referred to San Francisco’s economy falling behind New York’s.
“It’s important to see the city thrive, and we’re collaborating with our local peers to ensure the region grows as one of the world’s leading centers for innovation,” the spokesperson said.