If you have seen The Wolf of Wall Street, chances are you have heard of Jordan Belfort. Belfort is an entrepreneur, former stockbroker, speaker, and author.
However, he has a long and checkered past which landed him in prison. If you have not heard of him, this article will give you a rundown of who Jordan Belfort is and what his net worth is as well!
Jordan Belfort was born in the Bronx in 1962. His Jewish parents were accountants. Belfort would go on to complete high school and go on to college.
It was during that time that Belfort and his buddy Elliot Loewenstern made money by selling Italian ice at the local beach. They served them right from coolers. Belfort graduated from American University where he received a degree in biology. His idea was to go to dental school with the earnings he made down at the beach.
He would go on to enroll at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry. However, on the first day, the dean said, “The golden age of dentistry is over. If you’re here simply because you’re looking to make a lot of money, you’re in the wrong place.”
So because of that, he left.
Jordan Belfort would go on to become a salesman of meat and seafood in Long Island. The business was originally and success and was selling thousands of pounds of meat and fish every week. However, the business would fail and he had to file for bankruptcy at just 25.
Thanks to a family friend, Belfort was a trainee stockbroker at L.F. Rothschild (No relation to the Rothschild Family). However, because of the market crash of 1987 known as Black Monday, he was laid off.
Jordan Belfort would go on to found a franchise of Stratton Securities known as Stratton Oakmont. However, the purpose of Oakmont was to be a boiler room. A boiler room is an outbound call center that would sell shady investments via telephone. That boiler room would defraud investors.
Because of this, Belfort made a lot of money would have massive parties, and used a lot of drugs, especially methaqualone which was sold under the name “Quaalude”. He would then go start an addiction because of it.
Oakmont had made impressive strides with over one thousand stock brokers with stocks numbering over a billion. Because of its reputation, the firm was constantly eyed by law enforcement for its entire existence.
At the end of 1996, the National Association of Securities Dealers (currently the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) would expel the firm which ended it. About three years later, Belfort would be indicted for money laundering and securities fraud.
Jordan Belfort would take a plea deal from the FBI for leading a pump-and-dump scam that led to $200 million in investor losses. He would have to pay back over $110 million and would serve 22 months of a four-year sentence. Belfort shared a cell with Canadian comedian Tommy Chong who encouraged him to write about his life. This gave them a life-long friendship after they were both released.
In fact, Belfort thanks Chong for his new direction in life and became a writer and motivational speaker. Belfort said this about the crimes he committed, “I got greedy. … Greed is not good. Ambition is good, passion is good. Passion prospers. My goal is to give more than I get, that’s a sustainable form of success. … Ninety-five percent of the business was legitimate. … It was all brokerage firm issues. It was all legitimate, nothing to do with liquidating stocks.
Life Now and Net Worth
Jordan Belfort would go on to write two memoirs titled Catching the Wolf of Wall Street and The Wolf of Wall Street.
He would go on to give motivational speeches across the world such as in Saudi Arabia and Australia. He focuses on motivation, ethics, sales skills, and entrepreneurship.
Belfort has been married and divorced twice and has two children. Jordan Belfort’s net worth is a little complicated as he had to pay massive fines for his crimes. Thus, he should be worth around -$40 million and -$ 100 million. However, thanks to memoirs and royalties, it is believed that he is worth around $100 million. In fact, he still owns a mansion, has multiple cars, and more.
Jordan Belfort has led an interesting life. Having inspired many by his attitude and former lifestyle, Belfort remains a controversial figure in modern American history.
But, it does go to show that you should never commit financial crimes. Otherwise, you might end up in prison and not all of us have the means to write about our experiences to get rich again.