After an almost devastating financial collapse, years of robbing the public blind and an internationally acclaimed Martin Scorsese film showing us the ins and outs of life on Wall Street, many people are feeling slightly aggressive towards those blood sucking stock brokers who care for nothing but money. While some may admire the gall displayed by Leonardo Di Caprio in this most recent Hollywood role, others are simply disgusted by the true story being told. On top of all the lies and cons, Jordan Belfort (the man whom this story is based on) only ended up serving 22 months of a three year sentence for masterminding an illegal operation that bagged him hundreds of millions of dollars.
It’s understandable that so many people have a problem with this. At the end of the day, more than one individual has written to us over the last few weeks expressing their dismay with this gentleman. Indeed, one letter read…
“After watching The Wolf of Wall Street at the cinema yesterday, I feel like I’ve been left with a worrying conundrum. If ripping people off for barrels full of money will only put me in prison for 22 months, I’m half considering going ahead and doing it.”
Regardless of your own opinions on Mr Belfort, you must admit this fellow has a point. If someone walked up to you in the street and said “how would you like to spend ten years as a multi-millionaire, 22 months in prison, and then the rest of your life as a rich man?”, I’ll bet you’d take some time to think about it, right? I know I would.
This brings us on to the state of Wall Street at the moment. We all know nothing has changed since the days Belfort skipped across those cobbles. In fact, things have probably gotten a little worse. You’ve got overpaid brokers lying to their clients to encourage them to invest in products and markets the individual brokers knows will be unprofitable, just so they can make a commission. And what do they do with that commission? They spend it on prostitutes; top rated rtg casinos, fast cars and holiday homes in the Bahamas.
Getting back to the original question, “are US stock brokers out of control”? The answer must undoubtedly be “yes”. At the end of the day, this is a financial industry where most of the money in circulation belongs to other people. Surely, you’d think that would mean those looking after it would be extremely careful. Unfortunately, all evidence suggests this really isn’t the case.
So, what can we do to make a difference?
Well, that’s should be pretty obvious now. All we need to do is stop using brokers, and start making our own investments. This will require a little more work on the part of those risking cash, but it will almost certainly turn out more profitable in the long run. We need to stop these rich boys from capitalising on the movement of money and make them do some work for a change. I hear McDonalds are hiring…
Thanks for reading.