Kelly Loeffler outlines millions in assets in financial disclosures

The Georgia senator has been accused of using insider information during Coronavirus pandemic. (Tia Mitchell, Ryon Horne/AJC)

U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler made $3.6 million annually at her day job and holds up to $25 million in stocks for parent company Intercontinental Exchange, according to a financial disclosure filed late Friday.

Her assets include a Buckhead estate called Descante worth up to $12 million and owned by four separate limited liability companies that Loeffler and her husband, Jeff Sprecher, control.

They also own an oceanfront condo in Boca Raton, Fla., a villa in Sea Island, a private jet and a portion of the Atlanta Dream WNBA team. However, the bulk of Loeffler and Sprecher’s personal wealth is listed among hundreds of line items that represent tens of millions of dollars in investments and bonds.

The financial disclosure — the first time that Loeffler has publicly detailed her vast wealth — was accompanied by a sharply worded statement in which the senator said any criticism could only be motivated by envy or partisanship.

“The Left, The Swamp, and career politicians will use my success to attack me – in the same way they’ve attacked our President and his family – because we reject socialism, champion freedom, and unapologetically support the free enterprise system that made this country great,” Loeffler said. “The ridiculous accusations and desperate lies will be many, but I refuse to apologize for being successful and will do whatever it takes to help Georgia and shake up the status quo in Washington.”

Loffler's wealth and recent stock transactions have been criticized by both Democrats and Republican rivals who described her as out-of-touch with most Georgians and focused on her portfolio during the COVID-19 outbreak. U.S. Rep. Doug Collins is challenging Loeffler for her Senate seat and has accused her of "profiting off the pandemic."

Loeffler’s aides tried to head off new attacks with notes made in the disclosure about certain investments. For instance, on a line item detailing the couple’s ownership in a firm that researches new cures to viruses it is pointed out that the stock was purchased in 2015.

The financial disclosure covers Loeffler’s assets, income and liabilities as of Jan. 5, the day before she was sworn into the Senate. She was required to file the document as a new member of Congress but received an extension pushing back the filing deadline to Tuesday.

She beat it by four days. One New York Times reporter described the release as a "Friday night news dump:" a technique used by politicians to release controversial or jarring information at the start of the weekend when the public is less likely to be paying attention.

Her aides completed the disclosure form using check-boxes to describe holdings in very broad categories of value. For example, many of her stocks are listed as having a value between $15,001 and $50,000; the airplane she uses to commute to Washington is worth between $5 million and $25 million.

Most, but not everything, is listed within those various ranges. A couple dozen properties and investments solely owned by Sprecher are not listed with an upper range, making it impossible to know how valuable they are.

Case in point: the report says he owns “over $1 million” in stock at Intercontinental Exchange, the company Sprecher founded. Filings from ICE to the Securities and Exchange Commission list his annual compensation at $14.5 million.

That means there is no clear picture of the couple’s net worth. News reports often list it at $500 million, although recently Loeffler circulated an article that says the couple is worth $800 million.

This financial disclosure provides enough detail to count about $300 million.

In an attachment providing additional commentary about the disclosure, Loeffler’s team points out that she resigned from Intercontinental Exchange subsidiary Bakkt before taking office, meaning she no longer is making that $3.6 million annual salary. It also said that she donates her $174,000 congressional salary to Georgia non-profits.

Even without these earnings, the report said that Loeffler made at least $6 million in investment income over a year’s time.

The senator on Friday night also met a separate deadline to outline stock transactions she and her husband made in early April after announcing they would no longer buy and sell stocks in individual companies.

At the time, Loeffler was facing accusations that her stock trading during the coronavirus pandemic were being influenced by private information obtained through her Senate duties. Loeffler denied any wrong-doing and said that all investments were handled by independent advisers who informed her of trades only days, sometimes weeks, after they occurred.

Still, she and Sprecher said they would invest in mutual and exchange-traded funds to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.

Loeffler’s campaign said that advisers liquidated $15 million in stocks as part of this new strategy.

Investigative reporter Chris Joyner and audience specialist Isaac Sabetai contributed to this report.

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