While Republic presidential nominee Donald Trump has some vocal and powerful supporters from the Wall Street elite, it turns out that most of the money being donated from investment companies--and there is a huge amount of it--is going in support of Hillary Clinton's campaign. Clinton, the Democratic nominee, has been the direct or indirect recipient of the bulk of the $173 million that hedge funds and their employees have decided to contribute toward influencing the presidential election in 2016. The donations are outstripping any previous election donation figures of this type, in many cases by several times.
Triple the Donations of 2012
More than $173 million in donations in support of the candidates for U.S. president is a huge figure, particularly in comparison with previous election figures. This number is more than triple the total donations made during the presidential election cycle of 2012, and more than eight times the total figure for contributions made during the 2008 election cycle. These statistics were reported by the Center for Responsive Politics.
Total donations to support political campaigns in general during the 2016 election season have been up for the financial sector as well, with the industry contributing roughly $800 million in campaign funds. This is up by about 35% in comparison with figures from 2008. Hedge funds have by and large been the most active in political donations, according to a report by Americans for Financial Reform.
Despite Initial Momentum, Trump Campaign Fails to Launch
Though several high-profile investment leaders have been outspoken in their support of Donald Trump, a once-anticipated flurry of investment sector donations to the Republican candidate's campaign has failed to materialize. Instead, big-money managers are tending toward donations for the Clinton campaign or are focusing instead on down-ballot races.
In spite of the prominence of donations toward Clinton over Trump, hedge fund political donations have still skewed to the right in 2016, with 58% of total hedge fund campaign contributions going to Republican candidates. It is simply that those candidates are not Donald Trump.
Campaign contributions for Trump from hedge funds have totaled just under $250,000 on the year, but Clinton has earned about $20 million in support from the same group in the same period of time, with a total contribution from hedge funds and private equity companies of over $45 million. This makes Clinton the top beneficiary across either political party of campaign contributions from the financial sector, and Trump doesn't make it into the top ten. Instead, other Republican figures including Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, and Chris Christie have all outpaced the presidential candidate for donations from the industry. Many prominent funds that are accustomed to making political donations, such as Renaissance Technologies, have abstained from donating in support of Trump.