WASHINGTON —Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill, who ran aluminum giant Alcoa for 13 years, has completed the sale of millions of dollars worth of stock and options in the company as well as other holdings, the Treasury Department announced today.
In response to criticism, O'Neill in March had pledged to dump his extensive holdings in Alcoa company and had until June 22 to do so.
"Today Secretary O'Neill's financial advisors completed the sale of all his shareholdings, including his Alcoa stock and options," Treasury said in a brief statement.
"The secretary's assets will be invested in diversified investment funds," the statement said.
O'Neill owned 2.37 million shares of Alcoa stock at the end of last year and 3.77 million stock options, which give the holder the right to buy stock at specified price within a state period, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
At the time, those Alcoa holdings were valued at nearly $100 million.
In January, O'Neill touched off a furor when he said he would keep his extensive Alcoa holdings, but would not participate in decision-makng that might affect his personal finances.
Critics assailed the decision saying it posed a conflict of interest, or at the least the appearance of a conflict.
As Treasury secretary, O'Neill is among the Bush administration's top economic policy-makers. Through his decisions, he exerts influence on many businesses, particularly those in banking and finance.
Today's announcement also means that O'Neill has completed the sale of all other financial holdings as well. They include stock of General Motors, Microsoft Corp., Dell Computer, Pfizer and International Paper.
Treasury officials wouldn't diclose the total value of O'Neill's holdings or provide further details.