Topics » Business & Economy   Nov. 19, 2010

The Devils of American Finance - Past and Present

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1869: Black Friday Gold Scandal

Trying to corner the gold market, speculators Jay Gould (pictured) and James Fisk cozied up to Ulysses S. Grant to convince the then-president not to sell America's gold. They also bribed some government officials to the same effect. When Grant finally put government gold on the the market, the price plummeted. Speculators panicked, and many were financially ruined. Grant was denounced for his association with Gould and Fisk, who got out in time.