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Thursday, June 09, 2011

Apocalyptic financial numbers

Here's a comparison for James Taranto's Best of the Web Today column:

Barack Obama's worst week was about more than bad data. The two great legislative monuments to the first Obama term, the remaking of the health-care industry and the Dodd-Frank financial reform, look like they've got serious structural cracks. A McKinsey report estimates that a third of employers will abandon their health-insurance plans come 2014. On Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that the failure (or inability) of Dodd-Frank's regulatory arm to write new rules for the $583 trillion derivatives market has the financial sector in a panic over its legal exposure.

โ€” Daniel Henninger, Wall Street Journal, June 8, 2011.

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association said Tuesday that the true size of the global over-the-counter derivatives market is closer to $401 trillion, not the $583 trillion estimate given by the Bank for International Settlements late last year.

โ€” Wall Street Journal, March 29, 2011.

I don't know about you, but I feel much better after reading that second blurb. $182 trillion difference here, $182 trillion difference there, and pretty soon you're talking about some real money!

(This discrepancy aside, the Henninger article is well worth your read, and scary as hell.)

Posted by Beldar at 02:04 AM in Budget/economics, Humor, Mainstream Media | Permalink


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(1) Beldar made the following comment | Jun 9, 2011 2:18:49 AM | Permalink

Editing note: I don't claim to know which number is the correct one, so I changed my original word "goof" in the last (parenthetical) sentence of this post to "discrepancy."

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