Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I am Such an Optimist: Global Financial Assets Lost $50 Trillion Last Year

Last Friday, in "Early Rally Peters Out: U.S. Markets Down $11 Trillion in 17 Months" I guessed that the hit had been $30 Trillion. Pollyanna D. Climateer, that's me. Here's the story from Bloomberg:
The value of global financial assets including stocks, bonds and currencies probably fell by more than $50 trillion in 2008, equivalent to a year of world gross domestic product, according to an Asian Development Bank report.

Asia excluding Japan probably lost about $9.6 trillion, while the Latin American region saw the value of financial assets drop by about $2.1 trillion, said Claudio Loser, a former International Monetary Fund director and the author of the report that was commissioned by the ADB. The report didn’t give a breakdown of asset declines in other regions.

“The loss of financial wealth is enormous, and the consequences for the economies of the world will unfortunately commensurate,” said Loser, now the Latin American president of strategic advisory firm Centennial Group Inc.. “There are serious economic and political stumbling blocks that may well cause the recovery to be costly and slow to consolidate.”>>>MORE