Sen. Bob Corker faces complaints of possible insider trading
In their release, the CfA says Corker made "an astonishing 70 trades" in CBL. "Some of the trades closely preceded company announcements that led to changes in the stock's price and seemingly resulted in the senator making millions of dollars."
Anne Weismann, CfA's executive director and former chief counsel for another watchdog group, stated that the former Chattanooga mayor's "trades followed a consistent pattern — he bought low and sold high. It beggars belief to suggest these trades netting the senator and his family millions were mere coincidences."
The Journal has reported that Corker has bought or sold CBL stock for himself 45 times. He made the additional trades for wife as well as through trust accounts established in the names of his two daughters.
In one previously unknown purchase, Corker, a member of the Senate Banking Committee, purchased between $1 million and $5 million in CBL in late 2011 and sold them five months later for a 42 percent gain.
Congressional ethics rules require lawmakers to make public their financial investments in broad ranges each year.
The Campaign for Accountability alleges Corker's profitable trades in CBL were made in advance of his broker, UBS, issuing reports impacting CBL's trading price.
Corker recently amended his filings to reveal a 2009 purchase of between $1 and $5 million of CBL stock, sold just five months later in 2010 at a 42 percent profit. CfA says Corker made purchases worth between $3 and $15 million in 2010 and, just after his last trade, UBS said it was upgrading its outlook. The stock then went up 18 percent.
The group says Corker shortly thereafter began selling. A week later, the group says, UBS downgraded the stock and the share price soon declined about percent.