GASCOYNE, ND - OCTOBER 14: Miles of unused pipe, prepared for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, sit in a lot on October 14, 2014 outside Gascoyne, North Dakota. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Photo by Andrew Burton—Getty Images
By Jeff Bukhari
January 25, 2017

Donald Trump just helped out the shares of a company he used to own—big time.

Shares of Energy Transfer Partners (etp) rose more than 3% in midday trading, to a recent $38.50, on the heels of President Trump’s Tuesday executive order to revive the Dakota Access Pipeline project.

Investors have seemingly been encouraged by the revitalization of a project that seemed dead. Since news of President Trump’s order started to spread Tuesday, the company’s stock his risen more than 7.5%, hitting its highest level since mid-November.

The pipeline generated lots of headlines last year after the Standing Rock Sioux, a local native-American tribe, protested its construction over fears it would contaminate their source of drinking water. ETP’s share price crested in early August at $43.50, but once the controversy really started to become part of the public consciousness over the summer, the stock slowly started to slip. The price spiked again in mid-November, but dropped once the company announced it had been acquired by Sunoco Logistics in a $20 billion deal that some saw as undervaluing ETP. Less than two weeks after the merger announcement, then-President Obama issued a directive halting the pipeline project.

President Trump’s order reverses the Obama decision and paves the way for construction of the $3.7 billion pipeline that will be capable of transporting up to 570,000 barrels of oil a day. But despite the executive order, the resumption of construction may still take a while. Standing Rock Sioux tribal chairman David Archambault wasted little time in pledging legal action to prevent the restart of construction once news of President Trump’s order broke.

President Trump is a former investor in ETP. Records show he held between $15,001 and $50,000 in equity in the company when he disclosed the contents of his stock portfolio in June 2016. He had previously held more shares. In May 2015, a disclosure listed his holdings in the company to be worth between $500,000 and $1 million. He has since completely divested his entire stock portfolio.

Although he no longer stands to make a buck off the company, Trump does still have a connection to ETP. In June, the company’s CEO Kelcy Warren donated $100,000 to the Trump Victory Campaign, a fundraising committee jointly run by Trump’s campaign, the Republican National Committee, and several state parties, according to the Washington Post.


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