Wednesday, October 10, 2007

On being wealthy c. 1907

Lifted from Division of Labor:

The Sept. 21, 1907 NYT reports about ongoing testimony concerning the business practices of Standard Oil including, for the first time, revelation of the major stock holders of the company.

In 2005 dollars, J.D. Rockefeller's holdings would be worth approximately $2,4 billion. This amount seems relatively paultry compared to those on the Forbes 400. Indeed, J.D.'s Standard Oil holdings would put him around number 188 on today's list....MORE

I assume DOL knows the error in using standard inflation adjustments to make the point.

A different picture would emerge from using a ratio to national wealth. Or GDP, to mix things up. Or the current value of the equity. Or... well there is just so much fun you can have with numbers. Watch as we run the numbers game. Oh wait. Different meaning. Never mind.