The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Leiter, Joseph
LEITER, li'ter, Joseph, American financier: b. Chicago, 4 Dec. 1868. He was graduated from Harvard in 1891, and was agent for his father, Levi Zeigler Leiter (q.v.), in 1892-98. In the autumn of 1897 he began buying wheat on the Chicago Board of Trade in an attempt to corner the market. Wheat prices soared to double their normal height and at the opening of the year 1898 Leiter held the largest private ownership of wheat in the history of grain trade. Concerted action on the part of his competitors broke the corner and Leiter is reputed to have suffered losses to the amount of $10,000,000. He is president of the Zeigler Coal Company, Chicago, and of the Chicago, Zeigler and Gulf Railway Company; and a director of the American Security and Trust Company.