This investor is feeling the Bern

Wall St banker backs Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders, Democratic contender for president and scourge of Wall Street, has friends in strange places. Namely, in the very sector he's vowed to heavily regulate.

Subir Grewal, founder of Washington Square Capital Management, is a fan of the self-described Democratic socialist in spite of his broadsides against the financial industry. Grewal, who runs a small investment advisory firm, contends that his socially-responsible clientele see the financial crisis' upheaval as motivation for backing Sanders.

"My support comes from multiple policy positions he's taken," Grewal told CNBC's "Closing Bell." "I like his foreign policy, I like the fact that he seems like an honest person, a trustworthy person with a fair amount of experience, and I like the environmental focus; I also like the focus on income inequality."

Grewal is far from the only one who feels that way. Although Sanders has vowed to start breaking up big banks, he's developed a small but loyal following in the financial industry. That support is dwarfed by his chief rival Hillary Clinton's, but a recent CNBC report found a number of Sanders donors at banks such as JPMorgan, Citigroup, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley.

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Still, market watchers remain concerned that if Sanders becomes President, he may raise taxes substantially. Grewal argued, however, that the country has experienced exorbitant tax rates in the past and the country has still seen "growth."

"We've had tax rates in the 70 percent range, all the way through the late 70s into the early 80s," he said. "We've been at a place where our cap gains were taxed at income tax rates and our country did grow; we did have rising income back then." Yet during that era, U.S. growth was characterized by stagnation and high interest rates.

For that reason, contrarians argue that Sanders' policies are impractical. Nonetheless, Grewal said that Sanders position is critical to the growth of the country and has opened up conversations that were previously ignored.

"His focus on divestiture at banks in reducing their size is actually pretty important," he said. "If you think large and complex financial institutions pose an inherent risks to the system, you need to act."