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Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown emerged as Washington’s latest anti-corruption crusader this week, introducing a new bill that would put a stop to the apparently rampant insider trading by members of Congress.The legislation, known as the STOCK Act, is limited to active trading. Under its provisions, members and employees of Congress would be prohibited from making any trades based on nonpublic information, and report any trades in excess of $1,000.
That’s convenient for Brown, who isn’t an active trader but who has substantial interest in several companies that he has also gone to bat for in legislatively.
The Huffington Post reports that Brown has been an investor in Bank of America and General Electric, even as he pushed for legislative protections that would be a boon to the companies. Both companies were major beneficiaries of Congressional bailout measures during the financial crisis.
Brown, who was elected to the Senate in 2009, was a key swing vote during the passage of the financial reform legislation. His eventual support for the bill was largely contingent on the elimination of a $18 billion bank tax (which would have been a major blow to big banks like Bank of America), and the weakening of the Volker Rule to allow banks to invest up to 3% of their capital in private equity and hedge funds.
According to HuffPo, Brown also owns up to $50,000 worth of Exxon Mobil stock — he voted against ending federal oil company subsidies earlier this year.
Brown’s office has not yet responded to a request for comment.
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