Congress Members Bet on Fall in Stocks


Category: Politics, Short Selling

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

28 Responses to “Congress: Shorting America?”

  1. alfred e says:

    Absolutely spectacular chart!

    Should be tattooed on everyone’s brain.

    No one need say more.

  2. tradeking13 says:

    Many use these instruments to hedge their portfolios. I think people could be making more out of this than they should, but I could be wrong.

  3. Dogfish says:

    I’d wager that the investment portfolios of those in Congress is a major reason we are still in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  4. alfred e says:

    @dogfish: Correct. And then add in the political contributions of the defense contractors.

    Anybody remember when wars were fought by the Department of Defense, and not untold numbers of contractors.

    Halliburton? Anybody recall who their CEO once was.

    It would be interesting to know how much stock in defense contractors Congressmen own. I have an idea …

    Because I know how dirty and corrupt and expensive DC is.

  5. johnborchers says:

    I wonder if the day they voted on the financial bailout (they voted no) most of the House was short the market. If I remember right the Senate voted for and the House against. The market tanked about 7% that day, one of the biggest one day declines on record.

  6. perra says:

    You guys are such conspiracy nuts. Corruption only exists outside the US. We have a different way of life here.

  7. VennData says:

    Nice trades, why are these guys (and their spouses) managing our Social Security?

  8. alfred e says:

    @all: Very cool comments.

    And very relevant.


    @BR: Perfect bait. It’s a dirty job but someone has to do it.

    Let’s just hope. as I truly believe, your blog leads at a time when that’s kind of missing from everyone else .

  9. gregh says:

    So few? Don’t these people have better financial advisors?

  10. gregh says:

    Ridiculous article – esp the 4th example, Berkley’s hubby bought some Proshares shorts and made about seven hundred dollars – who cares?

  11. Bomber Girl says:

    Finally, some bipartisan action.

  12. cheese says:

    First of all……….you’re really sharpening your bones as Abelson’s replacement with the URL of this post……….”hate”…..really?

    Second……..I didn’t count……..but, I’d wager those yellow dots are less than 10% of the members of congress. Looks like around 5%

    Third……..what % of their portfolio was in these funds?

    This is so friggin weak!

    And, the sad part is………..no actually know better Barry.

  13. drey says:

    Give us an effin’ break Barry. So a few members of congress are short the market – unless you can show a nexus between their behavior (or votes) on key committees and their portfolios, you should refrain from this BS.

    Obviously the majority of congress which approved the stimulus (and bailouts) were long the market, right? Guess that’s OK…

    Agree with Cheese – this is weak, intellectually lazy, and beneath you. It’s not like there’s a shortage of real reasons to beat up on congress, after all.

  14. Investradamus says:

    @ cheese: You’re a smart one, aren’t you? The yellow dots in that chart all belong to the 4 members of congress listed on said chart.

  15. redtox says:

    Agreed w/ drey. Most, if not all, of these congresspeople had no idea about these trades at all.

  16. beaufou says:

    Well, suck on it BR.
    How can you insult the Republic, Congressmen are gentlemen, and only 100% of them care only about campaign donations.
    How dare you talk about reality when so much is at stake.

  17. perra says:

    Don’t you have “insider trading” laws for elected politicians in the US? Wouldn’t this be worth considering, given that these Congressmen have 1) access to information not available to the public, and 2) the ability to influence the stock market through their offices?

  18. Jeroen says:

    What ‘s the difference:
    1. sell all your stocks
    2. hold on to your stocks and hedge with short-ETFs

    Isolating some trades from a total portfolio hardly makes a case for “outrage”. Without a total overview it’s impossible to make a fair assessment. The article is a rather incomplete analysis, but will probably do for many. It’ll get a little-hammer-on-the knee reflex out of many people, so it serves the writers’ purpose, I guess. Time to buy some Pitchfork Inc. stock. Lazy, one-sided journalism is a bigger threat to democracy than a Congressional trading desk.

  19. flipspiceland says:

    If these are to be taken as the only way government officials at all levels engage in making money off of
    inside information, I have a Bhutan bank account I’d like to show you.

  20. mathman says:

    Going unnoticed right before our eyes, the on-going environmental collapse will have a real effect on all aspects of our “civilization”:


  21. globaleyes says:

    Since 1965, Congressmen have been praised for “bringing home the bacon” as opposed to “cutting the fat”, resulting in inflation, accumulated debt or both.

    The purpose of any government is to produce a balanced budget — year in and year out. The process that makes that happen is called politics.

    Failed politics means Congress has overpromised resulting in the largest “workout” in the history of mankind!

    It’s hard to imagine Congress repudiating itself.

  22. flipspiceland says:


    There is an inherent conundrum in ‘government’.

    e.g. Murtha in Pennsylvania is voted in for a lifetime, term after term, by his constiuents. He is honored in spite of his corruption in the local and Pennsulvania state newspapers and on TV.

    In order for the people of Johnstown to get their booty in patronage, highways, defense contracts and earmarks the money for those must come from people who do not live in Johnstown, that would be me and thee. It’s not raising pigs to bring home the bacon, it’s stealing pigs from other farmers which was a hanging offense in the not to distant past.

    This essential contradiction in what is best for the nation is bad for Johnstown, and what it is booty for Johnstown (and the corruption it’s numero uno must indulge in) is anathema for the other citizens of the nation.

    How can CONgress repudiate itself when this is how the business of government gets done?

  23. DeDude says:

    Nice to finally see some bipartisanship ;-)

  24. TakBak04 says:

    Oh Man my 10th Grade History Teacher would be rolling over in his GRAVE to see the SHIT that’s going down with our Congress……

    It’s just amazing the crap we were taught …juxtaposed with the REALITY of a BOUGHT AND PAID FOR CONGRESS!

    “Miss RUBY”…you just didn’t know it would come to this…and I know you are “pushing daisies” and the legacy of you is how MANY OF US ARE OUTRAGED! So…you did do your job…….but you wouldn’t wanta know what’s going on out there…these days.

  25. TakBak04 says:

    sorry…..”his grave” and the rest of our American History Teachers/Professors… Rolling in graves…part of that “WWII Legacy” and they were so innocent……..

  26. cheese says:

    @ Investradamus Says………..looks like u didn’t read the article either………

    Criticism FAIL…….

    my point is strengthened regardless………..13 members and or/ their spouses?

    Guess I’m too much of a cynic to even believe anyone would really base a vote off of this……….when your candidate comes up……….if you’re partisan……..these things really don’t matter…….as long they tow the party line, for the most part…….you’re happy………if you vote for people who sound nice, or look good, or came up with a snappy zinger…………it doesn’t really matter then either……….cause the next guy probably did something stupid…….or corrupt, or fraudulent…………so, who cares?


  27. DeDude says:

    cheese; unfortunately when the time comes, the choice is between two evils – and all you can do is to figure out who is the lesser evil.