Paul Pelosi avoided heavy losses with sale of Nvidia stock

Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), avoided heavy losses when he sold his shares of Nvidia computer chip stock a month before new restrictions were placed on the chips’ use.

The Pelosis did lose $341,000 when Paul Pelosi sold 25,000 shares of the stock last month after accusations that he might have used inside knowledge that Congress was considering a subsidy of computer chips to make the purchase.

Pelosi said at the time that he sold the stock to avoid any perception of impropriety. The consideration of the subsidy bill was publicly known, but it just looked bad at a time when there has been a push to prohibit members of Congress and their family members from investing in the stock market at all.

The Pelosis have made millions from Paul Pelosi’s stock trades over the years, and some of them just seem too coincidental to some, particularly Republicans.

What did he know?

In the instance of Nvidia, however, the Pelosis ended up staving off what could have been much larger losses when word came out that the U.S. would be restricting A100 and forthcoming H100 circuits to prevent China and Russia from using them in military applications.

Upon that announcement, the stock dropped 7.7% and has now come down 16% since Pelosi sold.

Now, those who have been questioning his moves all along are wondering if Pelosi knew about the restrictions and took the public backlash as an excuse to get out before losing even more money.

If the Pelosis really wanted to avoid the appearance of impropriety, it seems that they would choose different ways to invest, such as a blind trust or limiting investments to index funds that spread the investment over many different stocks rather than individual ones.

This is what presidents and Supreme Court justices do, and it makes sense that members of Congress at the national level would do the same. Certainly Speaker Pelosi is not the only member of Congress making stock trades, and some on the Republican side have faced similar criticism.

Did he break the law?

Unless some smoking gun emerges–maybe a leak of text messages or a conversation caught on video–it will be impossible to know whether Paul Pelosi relied on insider information in making his investment decisions.

Insider trading is illegal, but very difficult to prove. Anyone paying attention to publicly available information about congressional actions could have come to the same conclusions Paul Pelosi apparently did, and made the same investments and trades he did.

Any illegal actions taken by the Pelosis would have been painstakingly hidden or covered up to avoid the perception of corruption. Nancy Pelosi did not get to be arguably the most powerful female politician in the U.S., if not the world, by being sloppy and careless about her actions.

And maybe their actions are above board in this instance. The problem is, no one can prove it either way, so her political enemies are naturally using the appearance of impropriety to try her in the court of public opinion.

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