There’s a sucker born every minute? That’s not what P.T. Barnum said

PT Barnum

It’s one of the catchiest lines to ever come out of the rough-and-tumble world of business, but P.T. Barnum did not say it.

“There’s a sucker born every minute.”

The quote has been misattributed to the great showman for more than a century. But in one of his many books, The Art of Money Getting,” he talks about how important it is to not only respect customers but give them their money’s worth.

“The public is wiser than many imagine,” he wrote in this 1850 guide to financial success.

Barnum is remembered to this day, not just because of this misattributed quote but because of his genius as a businessman.

Click here to ready my biography of Barnum in Investors Business Daily.


  1. Another remark attributed to PT was his ruse to quickly empty the tent after a show, and make room for a new audience. He put up a sign


    Clever, eh what?

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