Merrill Lynch & Co., Citigroup Inc. and four other U.S. financial companies have used an accounting rule adopted last year to book almost $12 billion of revenue after a decline in prices of their own bonds. The rule, intended to expand the ``mark-to- market'' accounting that banks use to record profits or losses on trading assets, allows them to report gains when market prices for their liabilities fall.
This means that banks (and don't you so wish you could do this?) are recording their losses as gains. Totally too Kool for Skool. You have a 401 K? Take note.