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.
A Council on Foreign Relations Book