Dan Rattiner's Stories

My Oil Killing: How I Took Advantage of Record Low Prices

When a barrel of oil briefly dropped down to minus $10, I picked up 500 tons of it, then sold it back.

Well, let me tell you how I made a huge killing on Wall Street recently. You may recall that about a month ago, the price of a barrel of oil briefly dropped down to minus 10. People weren’t using much gasoline because of the COVID-19 problem. But Russia and Saudi Arabia and the other countries kept on pumping oil out of the ground. Soon, all the storage tanks in the world were full. For a week, the price of oil was minus 10. The oil companies would pay $10 a barrel to anyone who wanted it. They were paying to get it hauled away.

During that week, I drove my two cars out of the garage to spend time in the open driveway and had workmen, using rubber gaskets around windows and the garage door, feverishly make my two-car garage watertight.

Then I bought and took delivery of 20 tons of oil at minus-$10 a barrel. Also during that week, I went knocking door-to-door in my town, leasing all the other garages here, and wound up owning and storing 500 tons of oil that the oil companies were glad to be rid of. For that, they paid me $2 million in cash.

Well, the price of oil didn’t stay at minus-$10 a barrel. When it got back up to $32, I sold it back to them at that.

What a killing. They paid me once to take it away and then they paid me again to take it back. I did all this with just a few phone calls from my home office, and I’m walking away with 60 million smackers and everybody’s as happy as a clam.

My only expense has been paying the pittance for the short-term leases and the removal of the gaskets and the cleaning of the leftover oil from the floor, walls and ceilings of the garages. I even drove all the cars back into their spots.

Now Penguin has given me a big advance to write a book about this. Not bad, huh?

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