When the history of the crisis is written, August 2007 is likely to be universally adopted as the starting date. On 9 August 2007, bad news (see below) from BNP Paribas, a French bank, triggers a sharp rise in the cost of credit and sends shock waves through the financial markets. The problems, however, started much earlier.
After a two-year period between 2004 and 2006 during which interest rates in the United States rose from 1% to 5.35%, the US housing market begins to falter,
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