PayPal goof makes man overnight quadrillionaire

A computer error from the online payment website temporarily turns Chris Reynolds into the wealthiest person in the world.

By Kim Peterson Jul 17, 2013 12:59PM
PayPal website (© Tan Shung Sin/Newscom/Reuters)A Pennsylvania man became the richest man in the world for a little while, thanks to PayPal.

Chris Reynolds, a PR executive who also likes to sell car parts on eBay (EBAY), checked an email displaying his PayPal balance for June and was shocked by what he saw. According to the company, he had $92,233,720,368,547,800 in his account, CNN reports.

He was an overnight quadrillionaire -- and by far the wealthiest person in the world. In fact, he could have bought all of eBay at that point.

Reynolds decided to log in to PayPal to investigate, only to discover that PayPal had corrected the error and brought his balance down to a big fat zero. Which is what it should have been all along.

PayPal decided to donate an unspecified amount of money to a charity of Reynolds' choice to make up for the error, CNN reports.

It's America's loss, because Reynolds would have saved our skin with that money, given the chance. "I probably would have paid down the national debt," he told CNN.

More on moneyNOW

Jul 17, 2013 2:56PM
And by paying off the national debt with imaginary money he didn't earn, he would be paying the debt down in essentially the same way it was accumulated.  Classy.
Jul 17, 2013 1:51PM
Jul 17, 2013 2:00PM
Yeah, geez PayPal, you should have just let him have the 92 quadrillion dollars!  

Wouldn't it be cool if it worked that way though?  "I have 92 quadrillion dollars, so here, here's 15 or so trillion for our nation's debt, oh and here, here's another 100 trillion for the rest of the world to pay off any major debts, and I'll just put the rest in the savings.  Tada, the world's fixed!"
Jul 17, 2013 3:09PM
Sounds like how our government works. Making money out of nothing, backed by nothing.
Jul 17, 2013 3:19PM
I wonder if Michael Bolton from Office space now works for paypal? He must've placed the dicimal in the wrong position again, remember, it's not a mundane detail Michael!
Jul 17, 2013 3:22PM
Jul 17, 2013 2:45PM
If he tried to withdraw it, PayPal would have bounced.
Jul 17, 2013 5:10PM

Well, they're running up the debt with money printed out of thin air, why not pay it back with the same kind.


Yeah, I know, it doesn't work like that.  I only wish the politicians understood that.

Yeah and while was He's at it fire all the dead beat  congressmen and women,eliminate lobbiests making it illegal to lobby, Since thats part of the reason we're in the poor condition we're in. make it unlawful for  our leaders to give themselves raises without the country  voting it in evaluate from the top of the piramid to the bottom and dump the dead waste,take thier accounts away and make them pay back all thier salaries to pay off this big debt they dont bother to address......
Jul 17, 2013 2:04PM
If only it was his High Frequency Trading Account, that money could have been safely tucked away in the Caymans in three nano seconds.
Jul 17, 2013 2:05PM
yeah, well paypal screwed me out of money way back when.  still waiting for that apology.
Jul 17, 2013 3:54PM
So that's how the Koch's made their money.   PayPal.   Who knew?
Just another example of relying on computers to do our daily work.   They not only can lie to us, take our money from the stock market, but stab us in the back by telling our President what he wants to know to get re-elected.   We need one giant EMP to kill this monster.
Jul 17, 2013 5:39PM
I knew that Nigerian prince email I got wasn't a scam.  I wish I never deleted it!
Jul 17, 2013 4:38PM
Maybe Paypal is money laundering, big time?  lol
Jul 17, 2013 5:33PM
Payal should donate to my charity - the "Tim Personal Financial Well-Being Foundation".  No taxes, all cash, all for me!
Jul 17, 2013 5:17PM
I would have just hit SEND or TRANSFER......Job # 1
Jul 17, 2013 7:29PM
Damn... $92 Quadrillian... I don't even have the last 800.
Jul 17, 2013 3:22PM
I would put it towards my bills as far as it would go.
Jul 19, 2013 7:06PM
Surely wasn't the first blunder but amusing news in its entirety!....try it at home....write it and dream! Works just the same!.....
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