The Debt Ceiling Distraction

Much to the surprise of the Republican Party and the press, President Trump and Democratic leaders have been coming to agreements lately, including an alleged deal on DACA legislation this week and an agreement last week to put the debt ceiling debate off until December, as Democrats wanted. There were even whispers that they might do away with the ceiling altogether.

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Don’t Kill the Export-Import Bank

ashington politics may be considerably calmer than in recent summers (remember the crisis and credit downgrade of 2011?). But there remain simmering tensions looking only for an appropriate outlet. Over the past few weeks, the normally quiet Export-Import Bank, whose existence is likely a mystery to the vast majority of citizens, has become that outlet.

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Canceling the debt ceiling apocalypse

Before we begin, let it be said that the looming possibility of the U.S.'s default on its own debt is a not-insignificant issue. Let it also be said that the U.S. government may be unwilling to pay interest on its multi-trillion dollar publicly-held debt as of mid-October, and that this carries substantial risks. And, finally, let it be said that this is something we should most definitely avoid.

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What If Default Isn't a Disaster?

Before we begin, let it be said that the looming possibility of the U.S.’s default on its own debt is a not-insignificant issue. Let it also be said that the U.S. government may be unwilling to pay interest on its multi-trillion dollar publicly-held debt as of mid-October, and that this carries substantial risks. And, finally, let it be said that this is something we should most definitely avoid.

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Europe’s Economic Crisis: Could Default in Greece, Eurozone Sink Us?

As Americans fixate on the battle for the Republican presidential nominationand the continuing travails of the U.S. economy, the real story in financial land is what is happening in Europe. The issues aren’t new: concerns over the contagion of a default of Greek debt, or Irish or Portuguese or Italian, have been percolating for more than a year and a half. But there is a definite sense of late that these issues are potentially spinning out of control.

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Derivatives to the Rescue? How ‘Betting Against’ the U.S. Could Prevent A Default Crisis

Wednesday’s plunge in the markets signaled that the impasse over the debt ceiling ,if it continues, will eventually trigger a substantial market sell-off. That belief itself should have been a warning sign; when investors dismiss what is known as “tail risk,” only trouble ensues.

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Why is Obama Opposed to a Short-Term Debt Deal? Politics

s the tortuous debt ceiling debate continues, with plot twists that even the most diehard political junkies are having a hard time keeping straight, one aspect continues to bedevil the process: the staunch refusal of both President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to accept a short-term deal.

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The U.S. Is Not Drowning In Debt

In case you haven’t noticed, Washington is currently consumed in an acrimonious debate over whether to raise the debt ceiling. There is no agreement about whether to do so or how, but both parties appear to accept the logic that the United States is suffering from an unacceptably high level of government debt and that further debt will doom the U.S. to generations of decline. Judging by polling data, large swaths of the country agree. Nonetheless, that consensus is wrong.

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Default Risk: Wall Street’s Shocking Debt Denial

"The United States is not going to default on any obligation. We are not a credit risk, believe me." Calm words, coming from the financial sage of Omaha, Warren Buffett, and words meant to keep the markets calm in the face of mounting hysteria in Washington over the debt ceiling and potential default of the U.S. government. This perception—that Washington may go to the wire on Aug. 2 but that in the end, sanity will prevail—is widely shared on Wall Street and on bourses throughout the world. That is almost as disturbing as the debt mania, because if Buffett and the financial community are wrong, they are wholly unprepared for the consequences.

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What Would the Founding Fathers Say About the National Debt? Don’t Default

One of America’s favorite pastimes is to play the “what would the Founding Fathers say” game. Just pick an issue du jour, and ask the question. Given that today’s world (Google, Twitter, television) is probably way beyond even the imagination of the 18th-century designers of the Constitution, the game usually says more about today’s partisan fights than about the Founders.

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What Can You Do To Help Greece? Go There

It now appears that Greece will once again be bailed out of its financial morass. A year ago at this time, the world was roiled by the prospect of Greece defaulting on its considerable debts, and only the reluctant decision of the leading members of the European Union – Germany most prominently among them – led to more than $100 billion in loans extended to the Greek government.

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Obama and the GOP's Risky Gamesmanship Over Debt Ceiling Could Spur Another Credit Crisis

It’s official: the United States government is overdrawn on its debt limit of $14.294 trillion as of yesterday. Well, not technically overdrawn, as the U.S. Treasury directed by Secretary Timothy Geithner has taken a variety of measures to forestall any actual federal defaults on its operations—which range from keeping the lights on at the Smithsonian to maintaining combat forces in Afghanistan. These accounting sleights-of-hand will delay any actual defaults to early August. But still, after months of inconclusive wrangling by both parties, a new Rubicon has been crossed.

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