Loeffler made $3.5 million at Bakkt
Politics

Sen. Kelly Loeffler made $3.5 million at Bakkt

Financial disclosure forms show she’s divested millions in stock after insider trading allegations. But it doesn’t seem to be helping the Georgia Republican in the November special election to keep her appointed seat, which she’s losing badly

Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler made $3.5 million at Bakkt, where she was CEO until resigning to go to Washington. 

Thanks to Senate financial disclosure forms filed on May 1, we know a great deal about the cryptocurrency options and futures platform leader’s wealth, including the fact that she and her husband have been selling off investments at a furious pace. 

That divestiture is a result of the high-profile accusations of improperly buying and selling stocks after a confidential Jan. 24 Senate briefing on the seriousness of the coronavirus outbreak.

Despite her $20 million donation to her re-election campaign kitty, Sen. Loeffler may be returning to Bakkt soon, as Republican polls show her losing the special election to keep her seat, and losing badly.

In the meantime, we get a sneak peek at the lifestyle of Sen. Loeffler and her husband, Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) CEO Jeffrey Sprecher. 

Living large

Aside from the news that Sen. Loeffler made $3.5 million at Bakkt, we learned that both she and her husband each own two properties in Atlanta. In both cases, the couple own a pair of residences in the same area. All four are valued between $1 million and $5 million. 

They also jointly own a second home in Boca Raton, Fla., worth at least $5 million. That is in a luxury waterfront condominium property where prices range as high as $13 million. The disclosure form puts the condo at between $5 million and $25 million. 

But the stock and bond sales are the big news. The form lists 181 transactions, 64 of which were sales made either on April 7, a day before Sen. Loeffler announced she and her husband would divest from all individual stocks, or over the next week. 

Tone deaf

Her initial response to the March 20 allegations was a tone-deaf reply calling the report “a ridiculous and baseless attack” because she was too rich to pay attention to what was being bought and sold in her portfolio—such as buying as much as $250,000 worth of stock in Citrix, which makes teleworking software.

She explained, “I do not make investment decisions for my portfolio. Investment decisions are made by multiple third-party advisors without my or my husband’s knowledge or involvement.”

Loeffler made $3.5 million at Bakkt
(Photo: Twitter)

That was the week after Georgia’s initial unemployment claims “surged to more than 390,000,” according to an April 9 article by the Associated Press. They reached 1.3 million by the end of April, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle.

Getting pummeled

It may not matter for much longer. 

Despite being able to donate $20 million to her re-election kitty, Sen. Loeffler is losing badly in her November special election.

Loeffler was appointed by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp over the objections of President Donald Trump, who preferred Rep. Doug Collins (R-Geo.). Loeffler is running in an open special election in November, in which she is currently tied with two democrats at 11%, while Collins has 29%, according to an internal Republican poll obtained by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The April 29 poll of 591 likely voters found Collins trouncing Loeffler by a staggering 62-18 margin among Republicans. And Loeffler’s approval rating in the wake of the stock transaction scandal was 20%, less than half her 47% disapproval rating.

So maybe interim Bakkt CEO David Clifton—appointed in April when Mike Blandina stepped down after only four months—won’t return to his position as vice president of M&A and integration of ICE until after the election. Loeffler may be looking for her old job back.

Leo Jakobson, Modern Consensus editor-in-chief, is a New York-based journalist who has traveled the world writing about incentive travel. He has also covered consumer and employee engagement, small business, the East Coast side of the Internet boom and bust, and New York City crime, nightlife, and politics. Disclosure: Jakobson owns no cryptocurrencies.