Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Business scams that failed miserably

Using Corbin's influence to get an audience with the President, the pair would argue to [Ulysses S.] Grant that selling gold was a terrible idea that the government should avoid at all costs. The wily pair also used their influence at the White House to secure a position as assistant treasurer of the United States for Daniel Butterfield, who would warn them if the government started to sell gold.

With their connections in place, Fisk and Gould started buying up gold in September 1869, quickly driving the price of gold up by around 30 percent.

Once Grant and his advisors got wise to the situation, though, the government quickly sold off $4 million in gold to break the corner, effectively killing the inflated prices on September 24.

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