The New York Times reports:
The consultant’s assessment quickly spread through parts of the investment world. U.S. stocks were already spiraling because of a warning from a federal public health official that the virus was likely to spread, but traders spotted the immediate significance: The president’s aides appeared to be giving wealthy party donors an early warning of a potentially impactful contagion at a time when Mr. Trump was publicly insisting that the threat was nonexistent.
Interviews with eight people who either received copies of the memo or were briefed on aspects of it as it spread among investors in New York and elsewhere provide a glimpse of how elite traders had access to information from the administration that helped them gain financial advantage during a chaotic three days when global markets were teetering. “Short everything,” was the reaction of the investor, using the Wall Street term for betting on the idea that the stock prices of companies would soon fall.
It’s a complex story. Read it in full.
— Mark Mazzetti (@MarkMazzettiNYT) October 14, 2020
After spending his presidency siding with corporate boardrooms over middle class families, Trump’s team privately gave Wall Street the truth about the coronavirus so they could cut their losses – while publicly telling some of the most deadly lies ever. https://t.co/8x4dfXpmH7
— Andrew Bates (@AndrewBatesNC) October 15, 2020
Numerous White House officials – including Kudlow, Pompeo, members of the Council of Economic Advisers and Trump himself – expressed more alarm about the coronavirus in February to investors and others privately than the administration was saying publicly. https://t.co/1y0KW3qpea
— Tim O’Brien (@TimOBrien) October 15, 2020
GOP donors got an early heads-up from Trump aides that the virus would be bad. Armed with that information, investors set out to make a killing in the stock market.
— Jesse Pesta (@JessePesta) October 15, 2020