At last, the wicked, sinful and egregious corruption of the Obama administration can be revealed!
At last, the filthy pocket-lining, and gold digging, and palm greasing can be exposed to public view.
And, yes, it’s everything Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson ever warned you about.
New research has revealed that companies whose CEOs visited the Obama White House for high-level meetings enjoyed superior stock returns over the following three months of about 0.9%.
The visits were also often followed by the announcement of government contracts, typically worth as much as 0.09% of the company’s value.
Oh, and those companies also enjoyed a massive, er, 4% rise in the amount of positive regulatory news after the meeting. Over the next 12 months. When subjected to a systematic textual analysis. Using the General Inquirer’s Harvard Psychological Dictionary’s classification of “positive” and “negative” words.
Good Lord. Pass the smelling salts.
Has there even been such villainy?
These, er, explosive findings appear in a new paper, “All the President’s Friends: Political Access and Firm Value,”by University of Illinois finance professor Jeffrey Brown and assistant professor Jiekun Huang.
Read: White House won’t release visitor logs during Trump administration
And in their quest for corruption they left few stones unturned. Their research wasn’t just exhaustive but heroic: 11,846 “firm-year observations,” data from 2,286 CEO meetings, 130 days’ comparative stock returns for each, reams of regulatory news announcements and so on.
They controlled for extraneous factors, comparing stock returns with companies’ competitors, and, for example, excluding White House visits by chief executive officers who were merely attending the president’s broad advisory board. They didn’t just test each variable as torture it. Tobin’s q turns up at one point.
And this is all they could dig up.
Too bad, Tucker.
Never mind. I’m sure when your buddy Don leaves the White House, there will be a little more to report.
Read next: This scoreboard tracks the economy under Trump
Then watch: How to make sure you never run out of money