CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Tuesday morning, Bank of America beat the expectations of analysts. It lost $8.8 billion.
That is a staggering amount of money to burn through in three months time. If you stacked up 8.8 billion $1 bills and laid them down flat, you’d have a continuous line of greenbacks from the Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte to the new Bank of America tower in Midtown Manhattan (a distance of roughly 555 miles).
Or, put it this way, the bank lost an average of $1,119.25 every second in the second quarter. The average North Carolina household makes $43,754 a year. That’s enough to pay for 39 seconds of Bank of America losses.
The bank, of course, didn’t lose all of this money in an orderly fashion. It’s still squirming under the weight of bad mortgages, many of which came with the bank’s takeover of Countrywide Financial in 2008. A settlement over bad mortgage bonds led to an $8.5 billion payout for some investors last month.
Despite that record quarterly loss, the bank remains the largest in the United States in terms of assets, which, if you converted all $2.3 trillion of them into $1 bills and climbed to the top, you’d be floating in space, about halfway between the earth and the moon.