City of Dreams

I’ve been harping on the incredible threat represented by the $250 trillion in almost entirely off-the-books, unregulated derivatives market — 95% of which is should be but isn’t on the books of the top five US banks [see: The Wipeout Ratio.]

It’s an astonishing 550 times the tier 1 capital on the books of these same banks — all of which are considered too big to fail.  Looking at it another way, a two-tenths of 1% decline in the value of those derivatives could completely wipe out all tier 1 capital altogether.  If that weren’t bad enough, it’s dwarfed by the global derivatives market of $707 trillion.

It’s hard to appreciate just how much money we’re talking about.  But, does an outstanding job of putting it into perspective, focusing on the 9 largest banks’ $228.72 trillion in exposure.

Take the time to read this, and please pass it along. Click anywhere on the nice pretty picture below.

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