Coronavirus: US senators accused of insider trading named on Trump committee to reopen trading

'To provide counsel to the president on the reopening of America'

Justin Vallejo
New York
Friday 17 April 2020 20:11 BST
Trump says some states could start reopening 'literally tomorrow'

Senators accused of insider trading to profit from the coronavirus shutdown of the US economy have been named on the committee to reopen the US economy.

Georgia Republicans Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue were appointed to the White House's task force to reopen America again just weeks after facing demands for their resignation.

Ms Loeffler reportedly sold millions worth of stock following a 24 January Senate Health Committee meeting on the coronavirus threat, while also purchasing stocks in a company that offers teleworking software.

"Thank you, @realDonaldTrump for appointment me to your task force on re-opening America safely in the wake of #Covid19," she Tweeted on Thursday.

Mr Perdue, meanwhile, reportedly bought stocks in a personal protective equipment manufacturer on the day of the coronavirus meeting, which his office said he did not attend.

Both Ms Loeffler and Mr Perdue maintain they are not involved in their personal financial decisions. Ms Loeffler has called any accusations of wrongdoing "ridiculous and baseless," while a spokeswoman for Mr Perdue said he uses an outside financial adviser.

Republican senator Richard Burr has also come under scrutiny after selling off a portion of his portfolio following the 24 January coronavirus briefing. CNN reported that the Justice Department and Securities and Exchange Commission had launched a probe into the matter and have contacted Mr Burr as part of the investigation.

Mr Trump on Thursday announced that the bipartisan group of congressional lawmakers would participate in the task force that would determine when and how the country would return to normalcy.

They will be joining business leaders from across the country "to provide counsel to the president on the reopening of America in the wake of Covid-19," The White House wrote in an email to task force members.

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