The Stress Test
May 16, 2009 1 Comment
Excuse me. Hello? Yes, you. That’s right. You, the one who’s reading this.
I’ve got an announcement to make: I’ve “stress-tested” you. I ran you through a model on a giant spreadsheet I built. It has 97 tabs and 143 VBA macros, of course it farms some of its calculations out to a Monte Carlo server. I made some assumptions, of course, but they are just common-sense assumptions. Assumptions about the future unemployment rate, the 2/10 year swap spread, the average velocity of a sparrow, the prepayment rate of manufactured-home residents outside Carson City Nevada, the radius of the moon, the box-office take of Spider-Man 4 if/when it comes out, the 2011 slugging percentage of Evan Longoria, the average number of Twinkies your next-door neighbor’s little nephew will eat over the next three years…you know. The usual stuff.
I’m sorry to have to be the one to break this to you, but according to my stress test, you don’t have enough capital. You need approximately $37.45 billion dollars of capital. That’s what the stress test said. And stress tests don’t lie. It’s scientific and everything. It’s right there on the spreadsheet in cell A1. $37.45 billion. And, well, you just don’t have that many. I’m not sure how many dollars of capital you do have, but I’m pretty sure it’s not that many.
Therefore, you’re going to need me to give it to you. Here you go. I just printed them up. Go ahead, smell ‘em! Nice, huh? Good. Now you’re all set. You’ve got enough capital. You didn’t before but now you do cuz I gave it to you so all is well. Don’t spend it now. Don’t do anything with it. You have to sit on it. You never know when I’ll be back to stress test you again and determine whether you have enough capital, after all. You need a certain amount of capital and that’s the amount. I computed it fair and square. Scientifically. The amount I just printed out and gave to you. Understand? Good.
There now, I think that just about wraps it–HEY WAIT A MINUTE. I just realized I’ve got a big stake in you now. In fact, I’m your #1 shareholder. Nobody else even comes close. You’ve taken A LOT of money from me. You know what that means?
You better do what I say. Everything I say. Starting now. And until further notice.
What? You don’t want to? You have the gall to complain, when I had to bail you out, and you took my money? The nerve.
What? You want to give the money back? Sorry, can’t do that. Because then you wouldn’t have enough. The stress test said so. And stress tests don’t lie. They’re scientific.