Undelivered Assets

Banks, pension savings, mortgage guarantors, and all the major financial institutions on which we depend are now tied up in a web of undelivered assets. A is the registered owner of a bond payable by B, the principal on which has been credit-swapped out to C. The terms are controlled by a deed drafted by an investment bank D, which itself receives the interest, which has been aggregated with 30 others and sold notionally to E. E is foreign, and flattens the FX risk with a bank F, who sells and rolls a future on his long currency book, which is bought by another bank for an assured profit by running the position against a higher yield bond bought from a junk-status borrowing customer, which has been insured against the risk of default with G, a major insurer, who happens also to be A.

—Paul Tustain

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