It's no secret that Wall Street firms have traditionally favored Republican candidates for president.
And while they continue to support President George W. Bush, some have also substantially increased their contributions to his Democratic rival, John Kerry, in recent months.
A new study by the Washington-based Center for Public Integrity reports that executives and employees of four of the biggest financial service firms ranked among the top 10 donors to both candidates so far this year. Executives and employees of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co. donated $486,125 to Mr. Bush as of July 15, up 175% from their donations as of Jan. 31, while dropping $100,204 in Mr. Kerry's hat, up 150% from the same period. (The Jan. 31 numbers were compiled for P&I by the research department of the Center for Responsive Politics, Washington.) The employees of Citigroup contributed $246,645 to Mr. Bush, up 275% from Jan. 31, and $169,254 to Mr. Kerry, up 461% from earlier in the year; employees of UBS AG Inc. donated $368,900 to Mr. Bush, up 3%, and $138,700 to Mr. Kerry, up 310%; and employees of the Goldman Sachs Group gave Mr. Bush $295, 950, up 5%, and gave $127,750 to Mr. Kerry, up 86%.
Executives and employees of Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. appear to be betting big on Mr. Bush, donating $455,904 as of July 15. They haven't donated enough to Mr. Kerry to be listed among the top 10 donors to his campaign.
— Vineeta Anand