Level 3 assets jump at Merrill

In a quarterly filing today, Merrill Lynch & Co. dislosed that Level III assets had jumped to nearly $70 billion, an increase of 70% over the same quarter of 2007.  The firm also stated that more than $16 billion of this exposure is related to subprime.  Definitely a sign of things to come though relative to Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Lehman, Merrill’s ratio of Level III assets/tangible equity looks good at 90%.  Goldman, Morgan, and Lehman are all above 200% which is where more of the estimated US$1 trillion in credit crunch losses will come from.