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Sen. CorkerÕ real estate investments in question

Ties to REIT under scrutiny

Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) is in the spotlight for alleged insider trading after the Wall Street Journal started asking questions about his ties to a REIT and Yahoo published an article detailing his ties to other real estate companies. Per Yahoo:

Bethany McLean, a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and bestselling author, wrote the Yahoo article that attempts to unravel the complex story behind Corker's involvement with a company called CBL & Associates Properties (CBL), which is one of the country’s largest shopping mall REITs.

According to the article, Corker, his wife and daughters made approximately 70 "opportune and very profitable trades" in the stock of a company called CBL & Associates Properties.

The article noted that the senator told Yahoo Finance several years ago that he had a Bloomberg terminal.

Corker has blamed his accountants for a technical mistake involving the use of a methodology that didn’t require disclosure of the date of purchase. His spokesperson downplayed the CFA complaint and added that "these baseless accusations from a political special interest group are categorically false and nothing more than a smear campaign."

It’s true that the picture is far from complete, but there’s another element worth noting. In its complaint, the CFA suggests UBS was a likely source of tips. But if Corker has benefited from buying and selling CBL, there’s an argument that the company has also benefited from its relationship with the senator.

The article is a wide-ranging look at Corker's involvement in real estate investments, including the EB-5 investment visa program. Read the whole article here.

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