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Stress Testing the System

Simulating the Global Consequences of the Next Financial Crisis

Author: Roger M. Kubarych

Stress Testing the System - stress-testing-the-system
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Publisher Council on Foreign Relations Press

Release Date October 2001

Price $15.00 paper



What if you took seventy-five of the most experienced professionals in the fields of finance, economics, foreign policy, and national security and confronted them with two dozen policy problems triggered by a massive contraction in the stock markets? That is the premise of Stress Testing the System: Simulating the Global Consequences of the Next Financial Crisis. Based on a policy simulation that was conducted before the September 11,2001 attacks and is now even more relevant, Council Fellow Roger Kubarych draws several key lessons: government policymakers need to dedicate time and resources to identifying the principal vulnerabilities of financial and political systems—and anticipating their possible consequences. While it won't help them predict a crisis, playing out a variety of low-probability, high-cost events will leave leaders better prepared when one occurs. Kubarych notes that policymakers' first priority in a financial crisis is to stabilize markets—all other problems are subordinate.

This book is more than a revealing account of the lessons and implications of time- and crisis-pressured decision making: it is an instructive guide to organizing business and financial "war-gaming." Kubarych provides an insider's look at the collaboration among great minds that led to a successfully crafted scenario played out with real-world accuracy.

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Read the Foreign Affairs review by Lael Brainard.

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