In finance, default is failure to meet the legal obligations (or conditions) of a loan, for example when a home buyer fails to make a mortgage payment, or when a corporation or government fails to pay a bond which has reached maturity. A national or sovereign default is the failure or refusal of a government to repay its national debt. The biggest private default in history is Lehman Brothers, with over $600 billion when it filed for bankruptcy in 2008. The biggest sovereign default is Greece, with $138 billion in March 2012.
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