10. Don’t Bet Against the United States

The Great Recession posed the most serious threat to the national and global economy since the Great Depression of the 1930s. At its worst, the turmoil in late 2008 brought the financial system near collapse. Stock and bond markets cratered, and one blue-chip financial firm failed after another. By early 2009, businesses of all kinds and sizes were slashing jobs, and unemployment surged. Years later, the nightmare of that time remained vivid in the minds of investors, businesses, and consumers.

The crisis began as a fairly ordinary financial hiccup. Sharp swings in stock and bond prices happen regularly, and even major financial institutions fail from time to time. But this time disruption bred panic, with ...

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