Quote of the Day

Andrew Cockburn wrote:

“If the Occupiers start chanting ‘Mark to Market,'” an attorney highly conversant with the darker workings of the Wall Street-Washington complex told me, “we’ll know they’re serious.” Such a call would quickly presage the collapse of our “too big to fail” banks, for it would highlight the fact that a huge proportion of the assets of Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan, and Citigroup consist of loans that will never be paid back and are therefore essentially worthless. The so called “recovery” of our leading financial institutions from the post-Lehman abyss has depended on a fraudulent valuation of these assets, but stripped of the fiction, the banks are insolvent.

What does ‘Mark-to-Market’ mean? The Wikipedia definition states:

Mark-to-market or fair value accounting refers to accounting for the fair value of an asset or liability based on the current market price of the asset or liability, or for similar assets and liabilities, or based on another objectively assessed “fair” value. Fair value accounting has been a part of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) in the United States since the early 1990s, and has been used increasingly since then.

If America’s major banks were forced to use the Mark-to-Market rule when reporting their financial status, it would become clear that they are undercapitalized and insolvent.

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