After a revealing report by CBS "60 Minutes" aired at the end of last year, possible insider trading by Members of Congress has come under strong scrutiny. Under current law, Members of Congress and their staff do not owe a duty of confidentiality to the federal government, and therefore are not liable for insider trading. However, recent reports suggest sharing of nonpublic congressional information occurs regularly. The report noted circumstances where Members of Congress may have used their political status and access to nonpublic information to profit from buying and selling stock. On Monday, by a vote of 93-2, the Senate agreed to proceed to move to debate on the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act, a bill I am cosponsoring in the House of Representatives. The STOCK Act is a bipartisan solution that would prohibit Members of Congress and federal employees from profiting from nonpublic information they obtain via their official positions. It also requires Members and employees of Congress to report the purchase, sale, or exchange of any stock, bond, or commodity future transaction in excess of $1,000 within 90 days.
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