Willy Hutton doesn’t understand the word “cost”

The bill for all these mistakes would be picked up by wider society, with perpetrators suffering nothing – nationalising losses and privatising gain. The whole effect was to transmute capitalism into a system of value extraction rather than value creation, with knock-on effects that depressed wages and contractualised work into short-term and zero-hour contracts. The financial system, based in London and New York, had become damnable – the nightmare of our times.

The cumulative costs of this have become so large they can scarcely be comprehended. The total cost across the west of recapitalising bust banks, offering guarantees and making good disappeared liquidity is estimated at $14tn.

No, that’s the outlay. What was returned? For example, we taxpayers made a stonking profit – as we should – on the liquidity provision.

We live in a world in which the price of US Treasury bonds – a market of multi-trillion dollars – can move 10% in 10 minutes.

Eh? Absent a change in base rates (or Fed Funds) is that really true? Is it me just not noting or has Hutton managed to get something terribly wrong?

Note that price is price, that’s what he says, not yield.

3 thoughts on “Willy Hutton doesn’t understand the word “cost””

  1. It’s the Guardian, isn’t it? Several orders of magnitude errors are the rule not the exception. You shouldn’t be so pendantic.

  2. “Can” = “Could”
    . If Corbyn became PM, UK Gilt prices could easily fall by 10% in seconds.

    Anyone gambled on Occado’s French partner’s bonds – iirc yield ~21% ?

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