We all think we know the story of the recent ‘bubble in credit’. As the explanation goes; Americans took on too much debt, those debts were ‘packaged up’ into complex financial instruments, those instruments were then bought, sold and ‘re-packaged’ by people who didn’t even understand them, blah blah blah… Even with this cursory and boringly consensual view of recent history, at least people have figured out that they shouldn’t blindly trust the mathemagicians… or have they? Here I ask; what about the king of all derivatives; the one that deviously subsumes all others? Indeed, what about the derivative that even derivative traders assume to be axiomatically fundamental and distinctly not derived? continue reading »