“Billionaire investor and longtime Trump confidant Carl Icahn dumped $31.3 million of stock in a company heavily dependent on steel last week, just days before Trump announced plans to impose steep tariffs on steel imports.
“In a little-noticed SEC filing submitted on February 22, 2018, Icahn disclosed that he systematically sold off nearly 1 million shares of Manitowoc Company Inc. Manitowoc is a “is a leading global manufacturer of cranes and lifting solutions” and, therefore, heavily dependent on steel to make its products.”
After Comrade Stupid belched out his intention to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium, Manitowoc shares dropped $6 and Icahn saved himself $6M Ameros.
“Trump’s announcement rattled the markets, with steel-dependent stocks hardest hit. Manitowoc stock plunged, losing about 6 percent of its value. Reuters attributed the drop to the fact that Manitowoc is a “major consumer of steel.” As of 10:20 a.m. Friday, the stock had lost an additional 6 percent, trading at $26.21.”
You might recall that Icahn turned down a position in the cabinet because he didn’t want to sell off his bidness empire. He’s not exactly a selfless player. But could this all be a coinky-dink?
“Before February, Icahn was not actively trading Manitowoc stock. According to regulatory filings, he did not buy or sell any shares of Manitowoc between January 17, 2015 and February 11, 2018. The February 22 filing was required because his ownership stake dropped below 5 percent. Now that he owns less than 5 percent of the company, he is not required to make another disclosure about his holdings until May. So while the latest filing shows him still retaining some stock in Manitowoc, Icahn could have continued selling the stock. If Manitowoc is not listed on the eventual May filing — called a Schedule 13F — that would mean he has liquidated all his holdings.”
So we are left with possible doubt that this was just some sort of brilliant luck on Icahn’s part, or that he had the ultimate of insider knowledge. What we don’t know is if Comrade Stupid was a hapless dupe or if he was handing his pal a $6M Amero thank-you note.
I have no idea if someone committed a crime, but damn if this doesn’t smell like Insider Trading.