That’s roughly a ‘2’ with 16 zeros after it…

Via Huffington Post, we get the following bit of banking absurdity:

A New Hampshire man says he swiped his debit card at a gas station to buy a pack of cigarettes and was charged over 23 quadrillion dollars.

Josh Muszynski (Moo-SIN’-ski) checked his account online a few hours later and saw the 17-digit number – a stunning $23,148,855,308,184,500 (twenty-three quadrillion, one hundred forty-eight trillion, eight hundred fifty-five billion, three hundred eight million, one hundred eighty-four thousand, five hundred dollars).

Muszynski says he spent two hours on the phone with Bank of America trying to sort out the string of numbers and the $15 overdraft fee.

Two immediate interpretations come to mind:

  1. Americans really have racked up a shocking amount of personal debt.
  2. The taxes on cigarettes have gone ridiculously high.

Feel free to suggest other interpretations in the comments.

I especially like the fact that he was on the phone with the bank for two hours about this.  I can just hear the service representative: “Sir, are you certain that you haven’t written any 23 quadrillion dollar checks this week?”

(Unrelated news: Next Giant’s Shoulders will be up tomorrow, right here!)

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3 Responses to That’s roughly a ‘2’ with 16 zeros after it…

  1. Bob says:

    What is the point of a credit card company’s pre-approval process if they let anyone put a quadrillion dollars on their card? I would think the man should choose not to dispute the charge, then let the gas station take the money from the credit card company. They could give him a 1% gas credit (230 trillion dollars), and everyone wins except Bank of America

  2. The Wife says:

    Bob – it was not a credit card and there is no “pre-approval” process for the charge. If you don’t dispute the charge then you are personally responsible for the payment not the Bank. Obviously it was a system error and not some sinister plot by Bank of America to take a quadrillion dollars from him. Try reading the article before you make comments next time.

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