Bloomberg: Wall Street Is Under A Cloud, But Silicon Valley Is Bathing In Sunshine
The White House holds a cozy relationship with Silicon Valley, but not Wall Street.
According to Bloomberg, President Barack Obama hangs out with Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB)'s CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and people are moving between Silicon Valley firms to government jobs at a faster pace than Wall Street.
Bloomberg did note that the revolving door between the White House and Wall Street as seen in the 2000s wasn't well received by Main Street. There is no similar stigma for tech firms that in and of itself could pose a major problem.
Jeff Hauser heads the Revolving Door Project, which closely examines political appointees and their connection to the private sector. He told Bloomberg that wealthy and powerful Silicon Valley executives are often mis-labeled as being "cool," which makes it easier to lobby the government. After all, it is hard to convince the average American that what is good for a major Wall Street bank is good for them, but it is an easier job to convince Americans that what is good for Facebook is in their interest.
Technology firms have spent a combined $49 million on Washington lobbyists this year versus the $19.7 million the five largest banks spent.
As such, Silicon Valley's relationship is akin to bathing in a sunshine while Wall Street is stuck under a cloud. As an example, 183 people who worked under Obama through last year went on to work at Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL)'s Google unit and another 58 people headed the other way.
Other notable connections between Silicon Valley and the White House include the former Attorney General Eric Holder who took a job at Airbnb. Obama's former campaign manager, David Plouffe, started at Uber in 2014.
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