Exclusive: Bernanke breaks bread with top bankers

April 5, 2012, 12:36 AM UTC



By Stephen Gandel and Dan Primack

Ben Bernanke makes a rare Wall Street appearance.

FORTUNE — After completing a series of public lectures in Washington, D.C. last week, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke quietly slipped into New York City for a private luncheon on Friday with Wall Street executives.

Fortune has learned that attendees included Jamie Dimon (JPM), Bob Diamond (BCS), Brady Dougan (CS), Larry Fink (BLK), Gerald Hassell (BK), Glenn Hutchins (Silver Lake), Colm Kelleher (MS), Brian Moynihan (BAC), Steve Schwarzman (BX) and David Vinar (GS).

Sources say Bernanke spoke at length about monetary policy, in an apparent effort to persuade attendees that they needed to take a more active role in helping to deal with the European debt crisis. He spent virtually no time discussing regulation, although that mantle got taken up by both Dimon (domestic regulation) and Schwarzman (global regulation).

The lunch was held at the New York Fed, and hosted by NY Fed president William Dudley. Before leaving New York, Bernanke separately addressed NY Fed staffers.