Senate panel grills JPMorgan CEO over trading losses

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," June 13, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF "YOUR WORLD": All right, time to get back to the grill on the Hill.

My guest one of the senators questioning J.P. Morgan's CEO, Jamie Dimon, today, but he did so actually lucidly, which makes him stand out, which him here.

I'm talking about the Republican from Alabama Richard Shelby. And, Senator, to me -- and I know this was a well-intended presentation before your hearing, but I felt that for a lot of colleagues it was sort of a political bean-throwing test. And you just stepped back and wanted to know what could Washington do to prevent this sort of thing or to address these problems.

But I felt that a lot of your colleagues were pointing fingers and not really to solutions. What was your thinking?

SEN. RICHARD SHELBY, R-ALA.: Well, I'm not going to say anything about my colleagues, except to say this was...

CAVUTO: Please do. Please do, Senator. You have the floor.

SHELBY: ... this was a hearing; I thought this was a serious hearing, and not a circus.

And I try to look at the hearings that way. What we -- I tried to do is find out what went on, considering that J.P. Morgan still has a proprietary interest in that. And we will find out sooner or later sequence by sequence what went on.

But looking at it overall, I think the message today was that Jamie Dimon admitted they made some mistakes. They lost some money, which hurts. But they are well-capitalized. And of course my interest is, is making sure not that banks don't lose money or that they don't make money. I want them to make money. They take risk.

On the other hand, I don't want them to be under capitalized. I want them to be well-capitalized. I don't ever want the taxpayer to bail them out.

CAVUTO: But, you know, this comes at a time -- I don't know if you caught earlier sir, our Charlie Gasparino on Fox Business Network, which if you don't get, you should demand -- but you're a senator -- I'm sure you go.

He was reporting that this very same firm has information that shows unfunded pension liabilities across the country, leaving aside Social Security and Medicare, all that stuff, just public pension liabilities are approaching $4 trillion. That is a sum so gargantuan; there is simply no way to address it, save rapidly and steeply cutting spending and/or raising taxes by the same amount.

What do you make of that and whether you felt that you and your colleagues -- maybe this wasn't your intent -- are sort of wasting time talking about a firm and a bad $2 billion trade?

SHELBY: I think -- I think that you are absolutely right that we have so many larger problems, bigger problems, structural programs, complex problems that we ought to be focusing on those.

J.P. Morgan's loss, it was $2 billion. You are talking about a $4 trillion shortfall. We better get things in perspective.

CAVUTO: But the reality is, Washington doesn't and we have got all these tax rates and everything backing up, like I said, the proverbial planes at La Guardia on the runway now, and now growing talk that it is not going to be solved probably until a lame-duck Congress, if then, and now indications that when it comes to more financial regulations to try to deal with the kind of stuff that led to this presumably bad trade, we could make a bad situation worse, in other words, that Washington could compound the sins.

Do you fear that?

SHELBY: Always.

You know, what we should think about every day is to do no harm up here. And over-regulating an economy, overtaxing businesses, all these things are detrimental to creating jobs and to a viable economy. I worry about Europe. I was watching part of the program that you were conducting just a few minutes ago.

I believe Europe is burning financially. Europe's problems are not going to go away. They are so structural. Yet, our problems are right behind them. We cannot just look at Europe. We better learn from Europe, because it's not too late yet here in America, but it will -- we will be just like Europe in a few years, if not sooner.

CAVUTO: Well, if not sooner is right. Sir, always a pleasure. Thank you very, very much.

SHELBY: Thank you.

CAVUTO: Senator Shelby.

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