Update: Private Prisons Stocks Tanked When Elizabeth Warren Announced A Plan To Ban Them

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Written by Ann Brown
Elizabeth Warren
U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren speaking with attendees at the 2019 National Forum on Wages and Working People hosted by the Center for the American Progress Action Fund and the SEIU at the Enclave in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by Gage Skidmore

When 2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren talks it seems Wall Street listens.

Recently Warren announced her plan to ban private prisons, and soon after their stocks tanked. Here’s what happened: Prior to markets opening for the day, Warren tweeted out her latest proposal, which would ban the use of private prisons in the United States. 

Then, Bloomberg noted, stocks for private prison companies such as CoreCivic and Geo Group Inc. tumbled. “Private prison operator CoreCivic’s (CXW) stock was down 5 percent. Shares of The GEO Group (GEO), a Florida-based private prison and detention company, fell 5.6 percent. The broader stock market was flat to slightly higher,” CNN reported.

According to a spokesperson for the Geo Group, “Senator Warren’s announcement is a continuation of politically-motivated attacks based on false narratives.” 

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CoreCivic said “it’s unfortunate that politicians advocate” against private prisons that “keep communities safe, enrolls thousands of inmates in reentry programs that prepare them for life after prison and saves taxpayers millions.”

Warren had explained it before in a Medium post: “There should be no place in America for profiting off putting more people behind bars or in detention. That’s why I will shut down the use of federal private detention facilities by ending all contracts that the Bureau of Prisons, ICE, and the U.S. Marshals Service have with private detention providers. And I will extend these bans to states and localities by conditioning their receipt of federal public safety funding on their use of public facilities,” she wrote.

If elected president, Warren wouldn’t need Congress to make it happen as federal contracts are handled by the executive branch.

“The political world has really started taking Warren’s candidacy seriously. The fact that stock prices are now falling based on her rhetoric just shows that the Wall Street types she rails against are taking her seriously too,” Slate reported.