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Sen. David Perdue Says His Perfectly Timed Stock Trades Are Completely Innocent

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Two weeks after Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) helped to dilute a rule that governed the prepaid debit card industry, he reported acquiring stock in a company that stood to benefit from the rollback of those regulations.

In early 2017, Perdue was pushing to overturn a recent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau measure that, among other things, imposed new regulations on the growing prepaid debit card industry—including requirements that they be more transparent about fees and penalties and extend the fraud and theft protections enjoyed by normal account holders to those with prepaid cards. The rule was not completely overturned, as Perdue wished, but it was rolled back. 

A review of Perdue’s trading of shares of Atlanta-based financial company First Data reveals that an investment firm owned by the senator and his wife, and for which he serves as a director, bought and sold substantial shares in the company from June 2017 to April 2019. Perdue has been among the most active traders in Congress. But of the more than 400 companies in which he’s bought and sold stock since taking office in 2015, he’s reported more transactions involving First Data—a major card payment processor with a significant business in prepaid cards—than any other company but one.

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