The Wolf of Wallstreet has two bestselling memoirs based on the madness that was his life, a role encapsulated by Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese’s 2013 Biop. Jordan Belfort has acted as a consultant to more than fifty public companies.
Today, his Straight Line System empowers his followers to create massive wealth, abundance, and entrepreneurial success, without sacrificing integrity or ethics.
The Legend behind the Wolf
1. Jordan was earning $50 million a year, once reportedly making $12 million in three minutes.
2. He once generated a $700,000 hotel bill.
3. He sank his 167ft motor yacht, complete with seaplane and helicopter, after overruling the captain and taking it into a Mediterranean storm.
4. He used his first Wall Street Bonus to buy a white Ferrari because Don Johnson had one.
5. One office junior agreed to have her hair shaved off on the trading floor in return for $5,000 for a breast job.
6. Inside his Manhattan office, Belfort and his co-workers took turns tossing midgets at a bulls-eye.
7. He helped take Steve Madden, one of today’s most iconic fashion companies, public.
8. He woke up from a drug-filled bender with the police at his door — they arrested him for causing seven different accidents that he had no recollection of.
9. Forbes once referred to him as “a twisted version of Robin Hood, who robs from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers.”
10. He often charged prostitutes to his company card, even writing them off on his taxes.
The Legend behind the Wolf
While making millions in the 90’s with his investment company, Stratton Oakmont, Jordan become known as the Wolf of Wallstreet.
From an early age, Belfort realised he had a natural talent for sales while operating a meat and seafood business in Queens, in the 1980s. After that company went bust, Belfort began selling stocks in 1987.
In 1987, Belfort put his sales skills to use in a different arena. He started working for a brokerage firm, learning in the ins and outs of being a stock broker. Two years later, Belfort was operating his own trading company, Stratton Oakmont. The company made millions illegally, defrauding its investors. The Securities Exchange Commission began efforts to stop the company’s errant ways in 1992.
The Pump and Dump Scheme
Belfort partnered up with Danny Porush and raked in cash using a “pump and dump” scheme. His brokers pushed stocks onto their unsuspecting clients, which helped inflate the stocks’ prices, then the company would sell off its own holdings in these stocks at a great profit.
With the influx of easy cash, Jordan spent lavishly, buying a mansion, sports cars and other expensive toys. He also developed a serious drug habit, becoming especially fond of Quaaludes. Belfort was involved in several accidents due to his drug use, including crashing his helicopter into his own yard and sinking his yacht in a storm at sea.
Belfort encouraged reckless behavior in his employees, as well. Substance abuse, sex and horseplay were the norm at Stratton Oakmont’s Long Island, New York, offices. The employees were also urged to live by the motto,
“Don’t hang up until the customer buys or dies.”
Their hard-sell tactics paid off in the short term. As Belfort told the New York Post,
“It’s easier to get rich quick when you don’t follow the rules.”
Catching the Wolf
In 2003, Belfort was sentenced to four years in prison and personally fined $110 million. He served 22 months in jail, where he developed an interest in writing. Comedian Tommy Chong, one of Belfort’s cellmates during this time, encouraged the former stockbroker to write about his experiences.
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