Omar proposes tax on trades in response to GameStop stock

Bonnie Cash

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) suggested Thursday that there should be a small tax on stock market trades after the market was disrupted by amateur traders suddenly buying large shares of GameStop stock. 

Amateur online traders fueled by discussions on Reddit sent shares of the struggling video game retailer flying Wednesday, which saw its share price jump to $347 per share. Overall, its share price has risen more than 1,800 percent in January.

A small tax – 0.1% – on each Wall Street trade would reduce high frequency trading, a practice which drains profits from retail investors and benefits only the very rich,” Omar tweeted. 

“We could use the close to $1 trillion it would generate to cancel all student debt and make college free,” she said. 

This is not the first time Omar has brought up a financial transaction tax. She teamed up with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on a proposal to eliminate student debt with a financial transaction tax.

The tax would generate $2.4 trillion over a decade and the cost of student loan cancellation would be $2.2 trillion. 

Also on Thursday, the stock trading app Robinhood was hit with a class-action lawsuit after it restricted the trading of stocks popularized by the Reddit forum.

Stocks for the AMC movie theater chair and Blackberry also soared as a result of the online amateur trading.

“Wall Street has made billions on the back of the worst recession since the Great Depression, and fought to deregulate finance to pre-2008 levels. And the moment regular folks beat them at their own rigged game, it’s “SHUT IT DOWN,” Omar tweeted.

Tags Bernie Sanders Ilhan Omar Reddit robinhood Wall Street

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