How Much Money Exists In The World?

Some people have far too little money. Others have more than they can ever even hope to spend. But no one, not even Jeff Bezos, has all the money. See, there's an absolute cap of how much money anyone can own, and that is the amount of money that exists in the world. Seeing as even the greediest theoretical multi-trillionaire could hardly expect to find every single nickel and dime hiding under every couch cushion in the world, it's pretty safe to say that no single person is ever going to own every single piece of currency that exists on planet Earth. 

Still, for the sake of conversation, let's assume it's possible. How rich would a person be if they owned all the money that exists in the world?

There's a lot of "hidden" money in the world

According to Business Insider, the Bank of International Settlements estimated the total value of all the world's money circa 2017 at around $5 trillion dollars — that's five million million. The Federal Reserve estimates that a very respectable $1.74 trillion of this number is U.S. currency, which incidentally makes the good old dollar a steadfast and safe fort of value. As such, it's "one of the most important assets this country has," according to Karen Petrou of Federal Financial Analytics. 

Does five trillion seem like a huge figure? It certainly is, but if you ask the CIA, it's just the tip of the iceberg, because it's just the physical currency in circulation. There's a concept called "broad money," which includes not only cash money, but also checking and savings accounts and other purely digital forms of currency that are nevertheless easily accessible and acceptable as money. When you count it all together, the global total of currency is thought to be over $80 trillion. However, the vast majority of this money doesn't technically exist, so let's all try and avoid spontaneously running to the bank to withdraw all our money in an attempt to pile it all together and see how much $80 trillion in cash really is. The global economy would be in serious trouble.