I don't completely understand why the NYSE suspended Piggly Wiggly Co., because I don't think the NYSE suspends stocks for short sellign in general? I boldened the key sentence below. Will the NYSE do the same for GameStop [GME] or other short squeezed stocks?
The original article printed this as a single paragraph, but I added paragraphs to make it more readable.
The New Yorker, June 6, 1959 P. 128
ANNALS OF FINANCE about Clarence Saunders of Memphis, who in 1919, founded the Piggly Wiggly Stores, a chain of retail self-service markets situated mostly in the South & West, with headquarters in Memphis. Saunders is remembered on Wall St. as the last man who engineered a real corner in a nationally traded stock. By 1922 the stores had flourished so that its shares were listed on the N.Y. Stock Exchange.
When a group of bears began selling Piggly Wiggly short to force the price of the stock down, Saunders began a buying campaign to support the price of the stock in order to protect his own investment & that of other Piggly Wiggly stockholders. He supplemented his own funds with a loan of about ten million dollars from a group of bankers. His buying campaign was an attempt at a corner. The stock went up wildly, reaching a high of 124. At this point the Exchange suspended further trading & postponed the short sellers' delivery deadline. This resulted in eventual bankruptcy for Saunders & he was finally forced to step out of the Piggly Wiggly Company.
Saunders came back, however, In 1928 he started a new grocery chain called the Clarence Saunders, Sole Owner of My Name, Stores, Inc. The depression hit these stores in 1930, & they went bankrupt & he was broke again.
After that he started another grocery chair, called the Kedoozle, an electrically operated store. It was found that the machinery was too complex & expensive to operate. In his last years Saunders was working on an even more intricate mechanism - the Foodelectric. It was unfinished when he died in 1953.
By the way, I know this author, John Brooks, wrote a 1969 book Business Adventures that discusses this the Piggly Wiggly market corner in the chapter "The Last Great Corner". But my library doesn't have it.