Charles Ponzi

1882 - 1949

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Charles Ponzi (, Italian: [ˈpontsi]; born Carlo Pietro Giovanni Guglielmo Tebaldo Ponzi; March 3, 1882 – January 18, 1949) was an Italian swindler and con artist in the U.S. and Canada. His aliases include Charles Ponci, Carlo, and Charles P. Bianchi. Born and raised in Italy, he became known in the early 1920s as a swindler in North America for his money-making scheme. He promised clients a 50% profit within 45 days or 100% profit within 90 days, by buying discounted postal reply coupons in other countries and redeeming them at face value in the U.S. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Charles Ponzi has received more than 1,763,896 page views. His biography is available in 31 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 30 in 2019). Charles Ponzi is the 21st most popular extremist (up from 26th in 2019), the 566th most popular biography from Italy (up from 753rd in 2019) and the 2nd most popular Italian Extremist.

Charles Ponzi was most famous for his 1920s scheme, which he called "the Ponzi scheme." In his scheme, Ponzi promised investors a 50% return on their investment in 45 days. He would use the money from new investors to pay the promised returns to earlier investors.

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Among extremists, Charles Ponzi ranks 21 out of 205Before him are Ulrike Meinhof, Ted Kaczynski, Zodiac Killer, Albert Fish, Abdullah Öcalan, and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. After him are Cleon, Machine Gun Kelly, Jim Jones, Amon Göth, John Wayne Gacy, and Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo.

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Among people born in 1882, Charles Ponzi ranks 29Before him are Abd el-Krim, James Franck, Emmerich Kálmán, Zoltán Kodály, Princess Marie Bonaparte, and Arthur Eddington. After him are Princess Margaret of Connaught, Getúlio Vargas, Jacques Maritain, Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna of Russia, Percy Williams Bridgman, and Hans Geiger. Among people deceased in 1949, Charles Ponzi ranks 9Before him are Sigrid Undset, George Gurdjieff, Georgi Dimitrov, Edward Thorndike, Margaret Mitchell, and James Ensor. After him are Hassan al-Banna, Louis II, Prince of Monaco, Kim Jong-suk, Victor Fleming, Elton Mayo, and Klaus Mann.

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In Italy

Among people born in Italy, Charles Ponzi ranks 566 out of 4,088Before him are Pope Miltiades (250), Conrad of Montferrat (1146), Frank Capra (1897), Statius (40), Piero di Cosimo de' Medici (1416), and Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma (1545). After him are Gregorio Allegri (1582), Pope Anastasius III (890), Olybrius (400), Philip of Swabia (1177), Kurt Schuschnigg (1897), and Edmondo De Amicis (1846).


Among extremists born in Italy, Charles Ponzi ranks 2Before him are Man in the Iron Mask (1640). After him are Tommaso Buscetta (1928), Johnny Torrio (1882), Vincenzo Peruggia (1881), Carlo Gambino (1902), Frank Nitti (1886), Albert Anastasia (1902), and Matteo Messina Denaro (1962).