How did Jordan Belfort cheat on his customers

Jordan Belfort: The Wolf of Wall Street

During the 1980s and 1990s, his name was on everyone's lips: the broker Jordan R. Belfort made a million dollar fortune in just a few years with illegal stock transactions. Today he is considered to be one of the most famous stock market ripoffs in recent years.

Born in the Bronx, Belfort initially didn't really care about the international financial markets. Instead, he graduated from the American University in Washington, D.C., with a degree in biology before attempting the food industry.

Jordan Belfort: From Food to Securities

At the age of 23, he was selling meat and fish in the Long Island area of ​​New York. Already here he showed his talent, with which he expanded his business to several trucks within a few months and sold more than two and a half tons of groceries a week. This rapid expansion was covered by too little capital, however, at the age of 25 Jordan Belfort was bankrupt.

So there was only one way out for him, namely the profitable business with the shares. After starting out as a broker at L.F. In the late 1980s, Rothschild and his friend Daniel Porush founded Belfort's own brokerage firm, Stratton Oakmont, through which he cheated unsuspecting investors out of millions with penny stocks.

The company's motto set the general direction: “You don't hang up the phone until the customer buys or dies. - You only hang up when the customer has bought or died. "

Belfort and his employees bought large blocks of shares in undervalued companies through an opaque network of anonymous bank accounts and foreign banks. Then they lured their customers to buy more company shares, the price of which soared so rapidly.

At the height of the price, Stratton Oakmont sold its own shares again. While they reaped profits in the millions, prices plummeted - to the detriment of investors.

Stratton Oakmoont: America's largest OTC provider

In just a few years, Stratton Oakmont had grown to become the largest OTC provider in the United States with tens of thousands of customers, employed more than 1,000 people and conducted business worth billions of dollars. 35 American companies went public under the guidance of Belfort and his company, Belfort itself rose to become a multimillionaire.

But the power he wielded over his customers was just as inadequate for him as the newfound wealth. Jordan Belfort became a worldwide symbol for a dissolute and excessive lifestyle.

At his pompous parties the fine society of the US East Coast quickly romped about, at which Belfort burned himself into the memory with increasingly extreme debauchery.

So he acquired the luxury yacht "Nadine" - formerly owned by the fashion icon Coco Chanel - which sank a little later off the Sardinian coast. He later stated that despite warnings from his crew, he intended to sail into the middle of a storm.

Jordan Belfort: 22 months in prison for securities fraud

Such debauchery and numerous complaints about the workings of Stratton Oakmont eventually led the FBI to investigate and put Belfort in prison in 1998.

Belfort ended up behind bars for 22 months for securities fraud and money laundering. He was also sentenced to repay $ 110.4 million to defrauded investors - most of whom are still waiting for their money today.

During his time in prison, he shared a cell with Canadian actor and comedian Tommy Chong, who encouraged him to write his autobiography. The two works "The Wolf of Wall Street" and "Catching The Wolf of Wall Street" have since appeared in around 40 countries and once again brought Belfort revenues in the millions.

The Wolf of Wall Street: Filming with Leonardo DiCaprio

In 2012 the well-known Hollywood director Martin Scorsese began a film adaptation of his memoir under the title "The Wolf of Wall Street". The film, in which Leonardo DiCaprio takes the lead, celebrated its US theatrical release in December 2013, and a month later it will also be released in Germany - and reminds Jordan R. Belfort once more.

However, Belfort was not the only fraudster in the international financial markets. Read in the next articles how Boesky, Kiener and Co. came to their millions.

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