Here is the opinion of U. S. Senator Christopher Dodd on what could happen if y2k is not solved -- not just "addressed" -- by the financial services industry. He spoke guardedly of optimism with respect to the U.S. financial services industry. But what of the financial services community of the whole world? If they are not compliant, the international economy collapses. Why? Because of one of two factors: (1) the compliant banks and stock brokerage forms shut off all computerized connections with the noncompliant firms; (2) the noncompliant data of the noncompliant firms corrupt the data of the compliant firms. In either case, the systems are gone. So is the world economy.
Here is Dodd's warning:
"Let me paint a picture for you, Mr. Chairman, of what could happen if this problem is not addressed. It's December 31, 1999; you're at home watching the ball drop in times square.
"By the time the ball hits the ground, your bank accounts could be gone. Your mutual funds and pension accounts - gone. If you're a small businessman, your billing systems could be gone. All vanished into cyberspace purgatory.
"Fortunately, the financial services industry is somewhat ahead of the curve in dealing with this problem.
"However, it's important to note that there isn't a single financial institution, securities firm or insurance company that is year 2000-compliant today. So we're basing our optimism for compliance on the hope that everything the banks, securities firms and insurance companies are doing today will actually correct the problem."