The decisions by Stephen A. Schwarzman of Blackstone and Laurence D. Fink of BlackRock add to a string of ruptures between the business community and Saudi Arabia as questions continue to swirl over the fate of Jamal Khashoggi, who has not been seen since he entered the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.
On Monday, Reuters reported that King Salman or Saudi Arabia had ordered the country’s public prosecutor to open an investigation into the matter.
The New York Times reported on Sunday that Mr. Schwarzman, Mr. Fink and Mr. Dimon had consulted one another by telephone over the weekend, according to people familiar with the conversations. The men pressed Saudi officials to postpone the conference, while they and their staffs urged the Treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, to push for a delay of the event or to publicly make his attendance conditional on more disclosures from the Saudis about Mr. Khashoggi’s disappearance.
But world leaders have increasingly turned up the heat on the Saudis over Mr. Khashoggi’s disappearance. On Saturday, President Trump threatened “severe punishment” if the Saudi royal court were found to have had a role in the case. Separately, the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany called for a “credible investigation” into the matter.
It is unclear whether other prominent business executives still plan to attend the Saudi conference. Top executives of the Japanese technology giant SoftBank, which has collected $45 billion from the Saudi government for its Vision Fund, had been scheduled to attend. A spokesman for SoftBank declined to comment.