A trillion here, a trillion there …

European banks’ toxic assets may amount to $25 trillion. I really have no concept of how much 25 trillion of anything is, but it’s a whole lot.

A bail-out of the toxic assets held by European banks’ could plunge the European Union into crisis, according to a confidential Brussels document.



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15 responses to “A trillion here, a trillion there …

  1. Peg

    SCARED yet, Chris?!? I was scared in the middle of September!

    Now I think “catatonic” is a more apt description of my state.

  2. pulled up in OG

    A trillion, huh?

    Chris – How’d you like to make $3600/hour, 24/7?

    It’s only a buck a second, but pretty good money, even for a Greenwich realtor back when times were good.

    ~$600K/week, ~$31.5 million/year. A decent haul for a CEO/hedgie/master of the universe.

    Stick it out for 32,000 years and you’ll have that trillion. Pre-tax, of course.

    • christopherfountain

      Gee, Pulled, if I could defer taxes on that income via an IRA, it could add up to some real money after, say 20,000 years!

  3. Retired IB'er

    “I really have no concept of how much 25 trillion of anything is, but it’s a whole lot.”

    It is about two times the annual US GDP… or put another way, a very, very big number. It is also about two times the GDP of the European Union.

  4. Pingback: Instapundit » Blog Archive » CHRISTOPHER FOUNTAIN: A trillion here, a trillion there. . . . And the news from Europe is grim….

  5. Mason

    A trillion is a a lot of anything but in monetary terms it pales when contrasted to a porkillion.

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  7. ronnor

    A Trillion dollars is nothing, just wait until Obama dips his beak in for a another drink next month and inflation takes off and it cost $5 Billion for a loaf of bread. You’ll soon be thing back to the good old days when you could buy a Senatorial seat for only
    $500,000 or pay off Chris Dodd for a few points on his loan or buy a house with no money down and flip it the next day for a 50% profit. Why when Obama finishes up we’ll all be making a Trillion a week.

  8. Tennwriter

    And then when I write a check for a trillion and a half for Valium, I’ll have to remember  how many zeroes to put on the check. I think a lot of people will starve because they won’t remember the right amount of zeroes in a trillion.We need a gov’t program now to deal with this problem.

  9. boqueronman

    Just to get an idea of how much $25 trillion is let’s do a little modeling. BTW thanks to Thomas Sowell for this idea. Assume we have access to a time machine. $1 will allow you to travel back in time by 1 second. How far will $25 trillion allow you to travel? Well, assuming I have manipulated all the zeros properly, you would arrive in approximately 790,000 BC. That’s a “way back” machine!

  10. Briney Eye

    Well, if a dollar bill is 0.003 inches thick when tightly compressed, which is what I just got when I put a caliper to a stack of eight bills, 25 trillion would go around the earth about 48 times. Looked at another way, you could make a two-lane highway around the equator out of one dollar bills stacked on edge.

  11. Pingback: BobKrumm.com » How big is a trillion?

  12. centreman

    1 trillion is taking 10% of the net worth of ten million millionaires and yes 10 million millionaire households is about what we have in the United States as of 2009.

    Oh my gosh, have we accidentally through the magic of math discovered how to stimulate the entire economy without increasing the debt to the tax payer? A one time flat tax, ooops I mean millionaire stimulus to invest in America, the wealthiest are known to spend the least hence lets re-allocate that money where it matters…

    lol – now that is a joke, American millionaires investing in America.

  13. centreman

    Of course not, my post is meant to be a joke and to just change the perspective on the issue.

    A trillion is 12 zeros. A million is 6 zeros. A million times a million is a trillion.

    As far as the number of US millionaire households, I am not sure if the NY post is the best spot to check but fine, I’ll take your number.

    Lets make it a one time 30% flat tax. Low and behold that is $300,000 from one millionaire. 300,000 times 3,000,000 people is 900,000,000,000 (which is 900 billion by the way – just shy of one trillion)

    Again it will never happen but I think the point should be made that there are other ways of looking at this stimulus issue that do not involve increasing an already huge debt…