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Spontaneous combustion.

Alien invasion.

Zombie apocalypse.

What do these have in common? Their likelihood is next to impossible. So why worry?

This is how people tend to think about the financial system.

Mentioning even the possibility, for example, that the US could default on its debt is met with so much scorn and contempt it would be safer to stand on the street corner warning about an alien invasion.

The same goes for the imposition of capital controls. Or a collapse in the banking system. Or a currency crisis.

No one, from the average guy on the street to a Nobel Prize-winning economist, wants to acknowledge that these possibilities exist.

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