Members of the U.S. Congress are pushing for a ban of video app and social media platform TikTok. The pressure comes as the app could be a security threat to the U.S.
If TikTok is banned, several other social media platforms could stand to benefit.
What Happened: Members of Congress grilled TikTok CEO Shou Chew during a recent hearing and many called for TikTok to be banned in the U.S.
This ban could weaken the relations between the U.S. and China and could also upset some very loyal users of the app that spend hours each day making and consuming short-form video content.
Users of TikTok could flock to existing social media platform leaders or see several upstart video platforms grow.
Among the expected winners from the ban of TikTok are Facebook and Instagram, owned by Meta Platforms Inc META. YouTube, which is owned by Alphabet Inc GOOGGOOGL, could also benefit from its growing YouTube shorts video content. Snapchat, a unit of Snap Inc SNAP, could also benefit from the TikTok ban. Social media platform Twitter, which is owned by Elon Musk, also stands to benefit and could see opportunities to focus on short-form video and creator monetization efforts.
Several members of Congress own shares of the stocks mentioned above and could stand to benefit from a ban on TikTok, causing a potential conflict of interest. Here is a look at the members of Congress who own shares of the aforementioned companies, with data provided by UnusualWhales.
The members of Congress who own substantial shares of Alphabet, Snap or Meta Platforms include:
- Rep. Blake Moore, R-Utah (GOOG)
- Rep. Daniel Meuser, R-Penn. (GOOG)(GOOGL)
- Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn. (GOOG)(GOOGL)
- Rep. Deborah Ross, D-N.C. (GOOGL)
- Rep. Diana Harshbarger, R-Tenn. (GOOG)
- Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore. (GOOGL)
- Rep. Kathy Manning, D-N.C. (GOOG)(GOOGL)(META)
- Rep. Kevin Hern, R-OK (GOOGL)
- Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas (META)
- Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. (GOOG)(GOOGL)
- Rep. Rick Allen, R-Ga. (GOOGL)
- Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif. (GOOG)(GOOGL)(META)(SNAP)
- Rep. Robert Wittman, R-Va. (GOOG)
- Rep. Scott Franklin, R-Fla.(GOOGL)
- Rep. William Keating, D-Mass. (GOOGL)
- Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. (GOOG)
Pelosi and Khanna own the largest stakes in the social media platforms according to the report. The list does not include all members of Congress who own shares of the competing social media platforms, instead focusing on the largest holders.
UnusualWhales was one of the first to track the trades of members of Congress with the I Am The Senate section of the website showing their trades and performance.
“A lot of the trades were seemingly around, or as a result of, deals that would not be known to the average trader,” the UnusualWhales founder told Benzinga previously.
Related Link: 10 Best Stock Traders In Congress In 2022
Why It’s Important: There have been increased calls from the public and select members of Congress to ban members of Congress from buying and selling stocks.
While sometimes unintentional or not, decisions made by members of Congress can influence the share price of stocks they own in their portfolio. This creates conflicts of interest and can be avoided with a ban on trades made by members of Congress.
Unusual Whales teamed up with Subversive Capital to launch two new ETFs that allow investors to invest alongside members of Congress on the top positions held. The ETFs are the Unusual Whales Subversive Democratic Trading ETF NANC and the Unusual Whales Subversive Republican Trading ETF KRUZ.
Benzinga polled its followers to see where they may spend more time if TikTok is banned. In the recent poll, users were asked, “If TikTok is banned, which platform will you use more?”
The results were:
With ownership of both Facebook and Instagram, Meta Platforms could be the runaway winner of the potential ban of TikTok.
Read Next: Want To use TikTok, Instagram Or Twitter, You Might Have To Get Your Parent To Sign A Permission Slip