Every once in a while, I like to blog about fun facts that don’t relate to Mechanical Power’s business of taking the hassle out of Global Sourcing. Yes, roller bearings, sprockets, castings, roller chains and other power transmission products keep the world moving and productive. But money also plays a roll. Money is the ledger that keeps track. When we throw around phrases like “Trillion’s of Dollars in Debt” what are we talking about?
It was a big deal when the US went over $1 trillion in debt! It happened in my lifetime and was big news. Now that our debt is over $20 trillion and growing every day, I think it’s time to reflect on how big a trillion dollars really is.
Quite simply, a Trillion is a thousand Billions. And a Billion is a thousand Millions. Simple. Let’s say you have a 4-inch stack of $1,000 bills. . . that would be a Million dollars. If that stack of $1,000 bills was 364 feet high, you’d have a Billion dollars. But how high is that stack of $1,000 bills to reach a Trillion dollars? Any guess? Would you believe that the stack of $1,000 bills would have to be 63 miles high to equal a Trillion dollars?
All the Gold in the world (using a $1,275 spot price) is valued at $7.7 Trillion. All the hard currency in the world is around $6.0 Trillion. This includes all the Dollars, Euros, Dinars, Yuan, everything everywhere in every country.
Want another example of scale? One Million seconds ago was 12 days ago. One Billion seconds ago was 31 years ago (still within my lifetime!) Any guess when One Trillion seconds ago was? One Trillion seconds ago was 30,000 B.C.!
Keep this in mind when the word Trillion gets thrown around like it’s an abstract number that isn’t real. It is real, and it is Real Big!