Walmart CEO McMillon named Business Roundtable chairman

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Doug McMillon

June 2, 2017 file photo, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon speaks during the Walmart shareholders meeting at Bud Walton Arena. (Jason Ivester/The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette via AP, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Business Roundtable, a group that represents the most powerful companies in America, has named Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon as its new chairman.

McMillon succeeds JPMorgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon in the role. Dimon has served as chairman of the group since Jan. 1, 2017. He will continue to serve as a board member after completing his tenure as the group’s chairman at year’s end.

McMillon will serve as Business Roundtable chairman at the beginning of the new year, with a two-year term.

Last month, the Business Roundtable released new principles on the role of a corporation that imply a foundational shift, putting shareholders on more equal footing with others who have an interest in a corporation to some degree — including workers, suppliers, customers and, essentially, society at large. For years it previously held the mantra of the “shareholder comes first.”

“As chairman, I commit to keeping Business Roundtable CEOs at the forefront of constructive public policy debates as we pursue an agenda of greater growth and opportunity for all Americans,” McMillon said in a statement Thursday.

Walmart Inc. is currently in the midst of the country’s gun control debate. The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer announced earlier this month that it has decided to discontinue sales of certain gun ammunition and request that customers no longer openly carry firearms in its stores. Starbucks, Target, Wendy’s and most recently Kroger have also asked customers not to openly carry guns when visiting their stores. Dick’s Sporting Goods said in March that it would stop selling firearms and ammunition at 125 of its 700-plus locations.

The Business Roundtable, based in Washington, conducts a quarterly survey of its member CEO’s plans and expectations. Earlier this week the group said its Economic Outlook Index for the third quarter decreased from the second quarter to 79.2 — below the index’s historical average of 82.7 — due to growing geopolitical uncertainty, including U.S. trade policy and foreign retaliation, and slowing global economic growth. The survey also showed CEOs project that 2019 GDP will total 2.3%, down 0.3 percent point from last quarter’s estimate of 2.6% annual growth.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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