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This week in Trading History: Apple Launch the iPhone

This week in trading history we saw the first iPhone unveiled, the sale of Hitler’s famous grand Mercedes, and the first U.S. crude oil explosion that revolutionised the automobile industry.

4th January

The New York Stock Exchange opened its doors at its new address 10-12 Broad near Wall Street for the first time. The move came after the Great Fire of New York destroyed its previous address at 40 Wall Street.

Cornelius Vanderbilt, one of America’s archetypal businessmen, died on this day. Born in 1794, Vanderbilt’s family were rather poor and so at the age of eleven he left school to work on New York’s waterfront. In 1810 Vanderbilt bought a boat and started a small ferry business. However, he sold his boat in 1818 to go learn about the steamer business with Thomas Gibbons and in 1829 he had bought his own steamship and became a big name in the shipping industry. Eventually he turned to the railroad industry and redesigned some of the major aspects of New York city area rails. When Vanderbilt died, he had an estate of over $100m and was the wealthiest man in America.

5th January

Henry Ford introduced a revolutionary pay deal; he increased the wages of all his workers to $5 per day. It’s said that he wanted to increase their pay, so one day they would be able to afford their own Ford automobile.

6th January

Hitler's car that he used during a parade was sold at auction on this day. The Mercedes-Benz 770K Sedan was sold for $153m. The auction was in Scottsdale, Arizona and was believed to be purchased by an anonymous Russian billionaire.

7th January

The first commercial bank in the United States, The Bank of North America, starting trading for the first day. It was also the first company to have its IPO in America. The bank sold 1,000 shares at $400 per share, with the U.S. Government having 73% of the bank shares. The Bank of North America was replaced as the central bank of the U.S. in 1791 by the First Bank of the United States, and became part of the Wachovia Bank which later became apart of Wells Fargo.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average reached its peak for the year and the stock market began its 11-month decline, falling 45% due to the Panic of 1907.

President Jimmy Carter provided Chrysler with $1.5bn in guaranteed loans. To date it was the largest government bailout of a private company in history. However, Chrysler were hit again by the 2008 financial crisis and declared bankruptcy along with General Motors.

8th January

Happy Birthday to the King of rock and roll, Elvis Presley. One of the most, if not the most, globally recognised and celebrated musicians even long after his death. He died at the age of 42 at his home in Memphis, Tennessee.

9th January

The Air Transport Association reported that U.S. air carriers a had a total loss of $2bn in the last year. The association blamed the loss on skyrocketing jet fuel costs, the dwindling U.S. economy and Iraq’s offensive against Kuwait. The trade group continued in its downwards spiral.

The first Apple iPhone was unveiled. The product was available for purchase until 29th June, but it was one of the most successful products in history. The first iPhone started at $499 and 6.1 million units were sold until it was discontinued a year later.

10th January

At 10:30am in Beaumont Texas, a 100-foot drilling derrick dubbed Spindletop exploded a huge amount of black crude oil. This was the first major discovery of oil in the United States and contributed heavily to the replacement of steam and battery power as the automobile power plant of choice.