When Marx played in a capital venture
Wednesday 09 September 1992
In 1864, according to historical documents quoted by the Peking Youth News yesterday, share deals in London netted the father of Communism about pounds 400 - worth pounds 15,000 today. The money for his venture into capitalism was borrowed from his factory-owning comrade, Friedrich Engels.
Marx even boasted about his unearned income. He is quoted as telling friends, with breathtaking political incorrectness: 'It doesn't take much time to do this, and, if you are willing to risk a little bit, you can grasp money away from your opponents.'
Ross McKibben, an authority on 19th-century Britain, had not seen the documents cited, but said: 'This is quite plausible. Engels was an active investor on the stock market for many years.' Dr McKibben, of St Antony's College, Oxford, suspected Marx was not the wheeler-dealer he claimed to be: 'He probably just put the money where Engels told him.'
Marx did not have time to discover that shares can go down as well as up. As Peking Youth Daily puts it, his dealings were 'interrupted' by the founding of the Communist International. The newspaper almost implies that he should have stuck to speculation, lamenting: 'The pity of it is that his capital was too small.'
- 1 Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
- 3 Ann Summers survey reveals the UK's favourite sex position
- 4 Jaden Smith wears gender fluid dress to high school prom with Hunger Games actress
- 5 How much sex should I be having?
Ed Miliband returns to the backbenches but it's all a bit awkward as he tries to avoid eye-contact with fellow Labour MPs
Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
Charles Kennedy 1959-2015: A gifted, compassionate politician whose career was cut short by the 'demon drink' - latest news
Ayyan Ali: Pakistan's top model now appears in the courtroom rather than on the catwalk
Isis tortures 14-year-old Syrian boy and films it in graphic video for 'propaganda purposes'
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Why this year's general election was the most unfair in Britain's history
£24000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: These refrigeration specialists...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an operational role and...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Working within the workshop of ...
£20000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This specialist high tech compa...