Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler’s financial disclosures from late February and early March are simply fascinating. We already knew that Loeffler sold off a lot of stock in early February, while buying stock in a company positioned to do well during coronavirus shutdowns because it provides online meetings. But the hugely wealthy senator’s money moves didn’t stop there.
Loeffler sold off $18.7 million in shares of Intercontinental Exchange, the parent company of the New York Stock Exchange. Loeffler’s husband, Jeff Sprecher, is the CEO of the company and she used to be an executive there. Loeffler and Sprecher also sold shares of retail stores including Lululemon and T.J. Maxx, while making another really interesting investment. This time, they bought shares of a company that makes protective gear being used in hospitals fighting COVID-19.
Loeffler has said that her stocks are managed by an investment firm and she isn’t making the decisions. This disclosure does give Loeffler some losing moves to point to to bolster her case that this is just what financial disclosures look like when you’re offensively wealthy. She and Sprecher sold off some Facebook stock, when now everyone is home looking at social media all the time, and some shares of a remote signature company, which again is probably getting a boost from many people working remotely. (Understand that when I say “some shares,” I mean “almost certainly more than twice your annual income.”)
What makes Loeffler’s financial moves most noteworthy is if she was using information she got because she is a senator to her own financial benefit. In that sense, her transactions from late February and early March, when public attention to coronavirus was growing, are less damning than her transactions from January and earlier in February. Nonetheless, it’s interesting, shall we say.
The Justice Department and Securities and Exchange Commission are reportedly looking into financial transactions by some senators (a list headed by Sen. Richard Burr), but it’s not clear if Loeffler is among them.