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Big bank chiefs see corporate tax cut falling short of GOP's target

The heads of some of Wall Street's biggest financial institutions do not expect the U.S. tax reform to hit the 20% rate for corporations that Republicans working on the issue are proposing.

"Roughly what's in the marketplace is not a 20% tax rate. It's probably a 28% to 30% tax rate, which I don't think is sufficient," JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon said at an Oct. 13 Institute of International Finance Meeting in Washington, D.C. "We need to do [tax reform] to be competitive."

BlackRock Inc. CEO Laurence Fink agreed that the market is discounting tax reform, but said it is necessary to make the U.S. more competitive, whether it is done this year or next.

"It doesn’t have to be 20%, but let's center it around 25%," he said. Failing to cut the rate, Fink warned, would "take a lot of energy out of the market."

Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman also cautioned politicians against using the tax reform effort to advance other agendas. "Everything you attach to it reduces the chance of a tax cut," he said.

Fink added that persistently low market volatility is one of the biggest dangers for investors today.

"If you use today's volatility, you're comforted," he said. "But if there is a political event that is a real problem, we would have a pretty large setback."