October 4, 2023

Wall Street leaders have poured more than $ 9 million into groups supporting candidates in the running for the next New York mayor, with most of the money behind ex-presidential candidate Andrew Yang and Brooklyn President Eric Adams, plugged.

CNBC checked records of donations from Wall Street leaders who supported organizations that supported New York’s Democratic mayoral candidates.

A super PAC backing Adams has received more than $ 4 million from executives in the financial sector, according to the New York Campaign Finance Board. Two Pro-Yang groups, a Super PAC and a separate 527 group, collectively received over $ 3 million from financial managers.

Wall Street executives gave more than $ 2 million to a super PAC who sponsored one of their former colleagues, former Citigroup executive Ray McGuire.

The winner of the race’s Democratic primary, which takes place on June 22nd in just over a week’s time, is preferred to win the November general election.

The large cash donations show how important the race is to Wall Street.

“Financial institutions have invested a great deal of human and monetary capital in New York,” said longtime New York Democratic strategist Hank Sheinkopf.

“The street needs its winner and access to the town hall,” said Sheinkopf.

Super PACs can raise and spend unlimited money on their preferred candidates, giving candidates a massive financial boost during their campaigns, with much of the funds being used for additional advertisements.

A spokesman for Adams told CNBC that the campaign was not affiliated with the Super-PAC and declined to comment on who donated to the organization.

“Eric has won widespread support from across the economic and demographic spectrum to become the next New York City Mayor because of his inclusive, bold vision for the city,” Evan Thies, a spokesman for the Adams campaign, said in an email on Monday.

Yang and McGuire representatives did not return requests for comments prior to posting

The primaries for both the Democratic and Republican mayoral elections are due next week, with the early voting already underway.

A new poll by WNBC / Telemundo 47 / Politico / Marist shows Adams with a 7-point lead over the former municipal hygiene manager Kathryn Garcia. Progressive lawyer and activist Maya Wiley and Yang are behind the top two contenders in this poll. McGuire is in sixth place, 13% of the participants are still undecided.

The pro-Adams super PAC called Strong Leadership NYC has seen contributions from a wide variety of Wall Street executives, including $ 1.5 million from Steve Cohen, who owns the New York Mets and heads Point72 Asset Management.

Other top Wall Street donors to this PAC include $ 1 million from Dan Loeb, a founder of Third Point hedge fund; $ 750,000 from Ken Griffin, CEO of investment firm Citadel; $ 500,000 from longtime investor Stanley Printmiller; and $ 500,000 from Paul Tudor Jones, founder of Tudor Investment.

Cohen, Loeb, and Griffin also gave six-digit checks to a pro-yang super PAC called the Comeback PAC. The city’s campaign funding records show that the Yang PAC received other large donations from the financial sector.

Anthony Scaramucci, who briefly served as communications director for former President Donald Trump and currently runs the investment firm SkyBridge Capital, contributed $ 15,000 to the Pro-Yang PAC. Citadel Securities CEO Peng Zhao gave the comeback PAC $ 250,000, and investor Jeffrey Yass, co-founder of Susquehanna International Trading Group, donated $ 500,000 to the PAC.

Loeb, Griffin and Yass have jointly contributed $ 100 million in support of federal candidates through the 2020 election cycle, with most being used for Republican purposes, according to data from the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics.

McGuire entered the race with many who expected Wall Street money to go largely into his candidacy after his tenure with Citigroup.

The two founders of the investment firm Perella Weinberg Partners together donated $ 150,000 to the Pro-McGuire Super PAC, New York, for Ray. Ricky Sandler, CEO of Eminence Capital, donated $ 200,000 to the Super-PAC, while Pershing Square founder and CEO Bill Ackman contributed $ 250,000. John Mack, former CEO of Morgan Stanley, gave the PAC $ 45,000.