As investors, we do not put together successful investing lives by getting world events to happen that we desire. Rather, we put together successful investing lives by reacting intelligently to the events that do happen.
Although I personally regard it as a low probability event, the upcoming issue that is dominating the global financial newswaves is the prospect of a potential United States government default on its debt.
The real issue there is that the United States will not be able to pay interest rates on its debt to creditors (this means both foreign entities like China’s vast stockpile of US government debt, as well as American corporations and individual investors that held US bonds), and this will conceivably lead to: a (temporary) crash in the United States dollar as it loses its historical credibility to meet its debt obligations in all instances, the dollar loses its status as the reserve currency as part of a panic response, the price of oil ceases to be tied to the US dollar, US interest rates spike to adjust for the new risk, and the major components of the S&P 500 experience declines of at least 15%. Those are the unfortunate effects that could be on the table if the United States does default.