July 29, 2008

A billion here, a billion there...

You have $30.4 billion of assets (in this case CDO mortgage backed securities), which are so bad that you can only carry them at $11.1 billion on your balance sheet. In order to get them off your books you decide to sell them for $6.2 billion. Pretty bad. And that's without considering that you are lending the buyer $4.65 billion to close the sale. Amazing!

Sometimes it is obvious that Web 2.0 stuff is still minor.

Update: As the only collateral for the loan is the CDOs sold, can someone explain to me the accounting effect of the sale that Merril Lynch seems to be seeking?

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