Answers to Your Debt Limit and Default Questions

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  • Q. Could President Obama Ignore the Debt Limit?
  • Q. What do Global Investors Thinking, Are they Panicking?
  • Q. What Would Be the Economic Impact?
  • Q. Is the Debacle About an Out-Of-Control Budget Deficit?
  • Q. Why is it Potentially Catastrophic for the Government to Default?
  • Debt Ceiling Dilemma
  • Q. What is the Debt Ceiling?
  • Q. How Close Is the Nation to the Limit?
  • Q. What Will Happen After Oct. 17?
  • Q. When the Government Runs Out of Cash Will It Default?
  • Q. Couldn’t the Government Simply Print More Money?
  • Q. If They Can’t Print More Money, What Else Could Treasury Do?
  • Q. Would Delaying Payments Avoid a Default?

Q. Is the Debacle About an Out-Of-Control Budget Deficit?

A. This year's deficit will likely be the smallest in five years, thanks to higher tax revenue and government spending cuts. The Congressional Budget Office projects that the deficit will be $642 billion for the budget year that ended Sept. 30. Though still large by historical standards, that compares with the four previous years of $1 trillion deficits.

(Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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