(Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said President Barack Obama’s decision to expand investigations into home lending and sales of mortgage securities could stop settlement talks with the states over foreclosure practices.
“It has a pretty good chance of derailing it,” Dimon said in a televised interview with CNBC from Davos, Switzerland on Thursday.
Obama, in his State of the Union address Tuesday, said he has asked his attorney general to create a special unit of prosecutors to expand investigations into home lending and packaging of mortgage-backed securities. It is not clear how the new unit will be different from earlier investigations.
JPMorgan is the largest U.S. bank and one of the larger servicers of mortgage loans. JPMorgan, Bank of America (BAC.N), Wells Fargo & Co (WFC.N), Citigroup C.N. and Ally Financial Inc have been in talks with state attorneys general for months about settling allegations of foreclosure abuses.
The banks and states have been discussing a plan that would have the banks pay $25 billion to homeowners through reductions in principal on mortgage loans.
“I think it would be better for America if that settlement took place,” Dimon said. “If this thing derails that, so be it.”
Reporting by David Henry; editing by John Wallace