“Nobody knows.”

That’s the short answer experts provide when asked what will happen if the nation doesn’t raise the U.S. government’s $14.29 trillion borrowing limit by Tuesday. Without raising the limit, the federal government may have to stop or delay payments such as Social Security checks, Medicare benefits and military salaries. It’s unprecedented in the nation’s history.

“This would cause investors here and around the world to doubt, for the first time, whether the United States will meet its commitments,” according to the Treasury Department. “That would precipitate a self-inflicted financial crisis potentially more severe than the one from which we are now recovering.”

Continue reading on online.wsj.com