The Pending Crash with Rising Interest rates and Derivative Exposure at US Banks
This is what we are talking about when we talk about the "bubbles" that the Federal Reserve has created. The housing market is now completely and totally dependent on these artificially low mortgage rates. If rates go back to "normal", the results would be absolutely devastating.
But of course the biggest problem with rapidly rising interest rates is the potential for a derivatives crisis.
There are several major U.S. banks that have tens of trillions of dollars of exposure to derivatives. The following is from one of my previous articles entitled "The Coming Derivatives Panic That Will Destroy Global Financial Markets"...
Total Assets: $1,812,837,000,000 (just over 1.8 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $69,238,349,000,000 (more than 69 trillion dollars)
Total Assets: $1,347,841,000,000 (a bit more than 1.3 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $52,150,970,000,000 (more than 52 trillion dollars)
Bank Of America
Total Assets: $1,445,093,000,000 (a bit more than 1.4 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $44,405,372,000,000 (more than 44 trillion dollars)
Total Assets: $114,693,000,000 (a bit more than 114 billion dollars - yes, you read that correctly)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $41,580,395,000,000 (more than 41 trillion dollars)
That means that the total exposure that Goldman Sachs has to derivatives contracts is more than 362 times greater than their total assets.
The largest chunk of those derivatives contracts is made up of interest rate derivatives.
I have mentioned this so many times before, but it bears repeating that there are approximately 441 trillion dollars worth of interest rate derivatives sitting out there.
If rapidly rising interest rates suddenly cause trillions of dollars of those bets to start going bad, we could potentially see several of the "too big to fail" banks collapse at the same time.
So what would happen then?
Would the federal government and the Federal Reserve somehow come up with trillions of dollars (or potentially even tens of trillions of dollars) to bail them out?
The Federal Reserve has created a giant mess, and when this current low interest rate bubble ends our financial system is going to slam very violently into a very solid brick wall.
As Graham Summers recently pointed out, entrusting Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke with control of our financial system is like putting a madman behind the wheel of a speeding vehicle...
Imagine if you were in the car with a driver who was going 85 MPH down a road with a speed limit of 35 MPH (this isn’t a bad metaphor as there is absolutely no evidence that QE creates jobs or GDP growth so there is no reason for the Fed to be doing it in the first place).
The guy is obviously out of control. The dangers of driving this fast are myriad (crashing, running someone over, etc.) while the benefits (you might get where you want to go a little faster assuming you don’t crash) are minimal.
Now imagine that the driver turned to you and said, “I’m thinking about slowing down.” Seems like a great idea doesn’t it? But then a mere two minutes later he says “ we need to continue at 85 MPH for the foreseeable future.”
At this point any sane person would scream, “STOP.” The driver is clearly a madman and shouldn’t be let anywhere near the driver’s seat. Moreover, he’s totally lost all credibility and isn’t to be trusted.
That’s our Fed Chairman.
Sadly, most Americans do not understand any of this.
Most Americans have no idea about the immense economic pain that is going to hit us when interest rates go back to normal levels.
All of this could have been avoided, but instead the American people let the central planners over at the Federal Reserve run wild.
When the bubble finally bursts, the official unemployment rate is going to rocket well up into the double digits, millions of families will lose their homes and ....
When the bubble finally bursts, the official unemployment rate is going to rocket well up into the double digits, millions of families will lose their homes and America will find itself in the middle of the worst economic crisis in modern U.S. history.