'Unseemly' Detail Emerges on Senator's Stock Purge

Sen. Kelly Loeffler invested in a company that makes medical protective equipment
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 1, 2020 4:50 PM CDT
Senator Invested in Firm That Profits From Pandemic
Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., arrives for a Republican policy lunch on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, March 20, 2020, to work on a sweeping economic rescue plan amid the pandemic crisis and nationwide shutdown that's hurtling the country toward a likely recession.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Maybe Sen. Kelly Loeffler hopes the details will exonerate her? Well, we'll soon see. The GOP senator has given the Atlanta Journal-Constitution details about her sale of millions of dollars in stocks—much of which happened after senators privately learned about the looming coronavirus on Jan. 24. Turns out Loeffler and her husband, Jeff Sprecher, dumped shares in retail companies like TJ Maxx and Lululemon and bought over $87,700 in stocks of DuPont, a chemical company that makes protective medical supplies now in high demand, per Business Insider. Yet they also sold stocks in companies that might profit from people working at home, like Facebook and DocuSign, which allows users to sign documents remotely.

And Sprecher sold options valued at $1.8 million in nine companies, including Chevron and BP—a package that has lost $132,140 amid the pandemic. Either way, Loeffler's campaign says an investment firm managed the sales without any say from Loeffler or Sprecher. But certain details keep coming up, like the couple's sale of $18.7 million in shares of Intercontinental Exchange, a company run by Sprecher. And there are signs the SEC might be investigating. "I have no idea whether these senators violated the federal securities laws," says the former head of an SEC office in Atlanta. "With that said, these trades were, in the context of a worldwide health and economic crisis, certainly unseemly." (Another senator is under investigation over stock sales.)

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