Pelosi, Kerry May Share Investor Pain as AIG Stakes Evaporate
John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee, avoided potential losses. Because of the Arizona senator's run for the White House, his wife, Cindy, last year liquidated a blind trust that had contained stock in AIG, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Lehman. The amounts of stock she had owned weren't disclosed.
However, Did We Say $500 Billion? Sorry, Bailout Will Cost $1 Trillion
..."We're talking hundreds of billions," Paulson told reporters. "This needs to be big enough to make a real difference and get to the heart of the problem."
Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) said on ABC’s “Good Morning America” said lawmakers were told last night “that we’re literally maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system, with all the implications, here at home and globally.”
Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama, the ranking Republican on the Banking Committee, told “Good Morning America”: “I figure it will be at least half a trillion. But if you look at what the Fed has already done [by rescuing insurance giant AIG], and the extension of power to Treasury to deal with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, I believe we're talking about a trillion dollars.”
So, roughly, that's $3,333 for every person in the U.S. The bill comes to $7,246 if you only count actual taxpayers.
So is all this enough?Mutant says
The fundamental problem, of which industry was long aware of before this event is that CDS' are over the counter (OTC) instruments, traded counterparty to counterparty.
In other words, there is NOT - unlike, for example, the equity markets - a centralised exchange. This presents a startlingly wide array of problems. Just to touch upon three from a very, very high level (I could probably write 10,000 words on the topic).
First of all, nobody is really certain about the overall size of this market. Trades are conducted largely in private, and may even reside in off balance sheet vehicles or in subsidiaries not domiciled in the home regime of the corporate parent.
And, in fact:
In the range of almost $600 Trillion in notional value (perhaps $15 Trillion in market value) in OTC derivatives were in the global market as of December 2007 (that is not a typo - and $600 or $15, that is a lotta money)!