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, demonocracy.com 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.