The current CEO led the company through the 9/11 attack, the real estate fiasco in 2008, the losses of co-branded card partners such as Fidelity, JetBlue and Cosco. It may yet lose Starwood / Marriott to Chase if Marriott ultimately chooses Chase to be its sole card issuer.
Amex needs to reinvent itself and not just try to play the catch-up game with Chase.
So far, it seems playing catch-up is what Amex is doing.
It's battling with Chase for the Marriott merger with Starwood. It was forced to beef up the benefits for its Platinum cardholders because Chase introduced the overwhelmingly well received Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card. The financially well-to-do customers are no longer Amex's stronghold.
Recently, the company's strategy seemed to increase its focus on the international and small business customers. The strategy shift can be seen throughout the aggressive ads on Facebook and other social medias.
The stock is up about 23% year to date.