Subscribe to Money Magazine
Markets & Stocks

GOP party won't slow Wall Street
Financial district businesses won't abandon area because of Republican National Convention worries.
July 14, 2004: 1:17 PM EDT
by Katie Benner, CNN/Money staff writer

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Despite commuter and security worries surrounding next month's Republican National Convention, it will be business as usual on Wall Street.

"We work in lower Manhattan. This is New York. We're not afraid of attacks," said Eric Alexander, chief operating officer of the brokerage firm Wall Street Access.

At least one newspaper report Wednesday indicated that New York's Financial District is preparing itself for a business-disrupting, logistical nightmare during the week of the convention, scheduled to take place at Madison Square Garden in midtown Manhattan from Aug. 30-Sept. 2.

But most business and municipal officials contacted by CNN/Money appear to shrug off the upcoming GOP event.

"We do not anticipate any impact on the business of the New York Stock Exchange," said an NYSE representative, which will make no special time off provisions for its employees or halt any part of its operations.

"The city is open for business," said Jason Post, a spokesman with the New York Police Department. "Outside the Garden area, you won't really feel the effects of the convention.

Morgan Stanley would not comment on the Washington Post story that says the brokerage will relocate employees and encourage them to take vacation during the Republican Convention.

A spokesman with Goldman Sachs said the investment bank had no comment at this time.

"Every fall New York hosts the UN General Assembly, and while there are sometimes disturbances the city goes on and feels little impact from that event," said Post. "(The convention) will have a similar impact."

Deputy commissioner Paul L. Brown said the NYPD had not given Wall Street firms specific operating instructions for the week, and that the police department would give regular updates during the convention about any disturbances that could impact business operations.

For Wall Street Access, the only company to officially tell the press it will move part of its operations because of the event, Alexander said it was a precautionary measure.

Stock Exchanges

"We're not closing the lower Manhattan location," said Alexander. While the company will move some traders and administrative support staff to their disaster recovery site in Edison, N.J. , Alexander emphasized that this is a site it operates out of everyday.

"We're thinking in terms of logistics," he said. "There may be added security on the rails, tunnels and bridges, so we want to make it easier for the people who must come into lower Manhattan by not making all of our employees commute in."

The week ahead of Labor Day, also the week of the convention, is typically one of the slowest on Wall Street, when many workers take vacations. If the city does slow for security concerns, there will likely be little business to affect, the brokerage firms say.  Top of page

  More on MARKETS
It's not just you: Everything really is getting more expensive
Campbell Soup CEO abruptly steps down
Why some retailers are winning and some are losing
Starbucks is opening its bathrooms to everyone
Elon Musk: The amped-up version of Tesla's Model 3 will cost $78,000
It's not just you: Everything really is getting more expensive

graphic graphic