By KELLY COHEN • 1/8/17 12:01 AM

The stocks of the two biggest for-profit private prison and detention center companies have jumped since President-elect Trump's victory in November, as investors gamble that Trump's tough talk about detaining illegal immigrants will mean more contracts for the two firms.

If Trump follows through on his campaign promises to set up private prisons, Corecivic and GEO Group will likely stand to benefit. And it will mark a shift away from the Obama administration that has taken steps to move away from private prisons.

President Obama's Justice Department announced over the summer it would phase out its use of private prisons. But detention facilities holding illegal immigrants weren't affected, since those facilities fall under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security.

In December, DHS said in a 23-page review that the use of private prisons for immigration detainees will continue, despite complaints about safety and other issues. According to a DHS advisory report, 73 percent of immigration detainees are held in privately run prisons. Only 10 percent are in government-run facilities, and the rest are in cells rented from state or local prisons.

"Use of these facilities will continue. We've seen dramatic surges in detention," Karen Tandy, who led the panel that conducted the review, told the Homeland Security Advisory Council.

When Trump is sworn in, many expect his administration to expand their use even more. One big reason is cost: government-run prisons would cost up to $6 billion annually, as opposed to the $3 billion a year price tag it costs now to use a mix of private and public facilities.

While that pleases budget hawks, immigration advocates aren't happy. One immigration group wants Trump to "heed the growing consensus and overwhelming evidence that private prisons are dangerous and deadly places that need to be shut down immediately" — but knows the president-elect won't do so.

According to co-director of the Detention Watch Network Silky Shah, there are "no disillusions" about Trump's "long history as a purveyor of shameful financial incentives."

"Our confidence lies in the communities fighting the private prison industry on the front lines and in the American people to be steadfast in their demand to end the toxic relationship between private prisons and immigration detention," Shah told the Washington Examiner.

In 2015, CoreCivic, known also as CCA, and GEO received $765 million for immigration detention, more than double the $307 million they received in 2008. And both companies are looking forward to what a Trump administration is set to bring.

"We look forward to strengthening our partnership at the federal level as we have for the last 30 years under both Republican and Democratic administrations," Pablo Paez, GEO's spokesperson, told the Washington Examiner.

Paez added that GEO, which is based in Florida, is "uniquely positioned to provide high quality services in safe, secure and humane residential environments while maximizing cost savings for taxpayers."

Management and Training Corporation opposed the Justice Department's decision to phase out private prisons. But the Utah-based contractor that manages the facilities is looking forward to a Trump administration.

"The private sector has long provided quality services, cost savings and an emphasis on rehabilitation in corrections. It's a win-win partnership that results in more effective programming and greater success in reducing recidivism. President-elect Donald Trump understands the advantages of these partnerships and has been clear in his support for the private sector's contributions in corrections," Issa Arnita, director of MTC's corporate communications, told the Washington Examiner.

However, to Marshall Fitz, there is no winning with private prisons. Fitz was a senior fellow at the left-leaning Center for American Progress when he dissented from the DHS review panel.

Fitz is now the managing director of immigration at Emerson Collective, an immigration policy organization, and said at the time that the evidence in the DHS review "points directly toward the inferiority of the private prison model."

He stands by those claims now, and says immigration reform advocates are "preparing for the worst" under Trump, as they "expect the effort to be accompanied by a related effort to significantly expand immigration detention capacity."

"A Trump administration would almost certainly turn to private prison companies as the cheapest, most expedient solution to that capacity challenge," Fitz told the Washington Examiner, but noted that Trump can only do as much as the DHS's budget allows.

"If Congress follows Trump down this path toward mass deportation and mass incarceration, the only people to benefit will be the shareholders of private prison corporations," Fitz explained.