I have been thinking at the question in the title for a while, unable to find a convicing answer. Today I discovered that Ben Bernanke believes has an answer, which serves, if I do not read it wrong, as the opening post of his new blog. Needless to say it does not convince me, if anything because his was one of the many hypotheses I also considered and then disregarded. But BB is BB, hence, lacking a better theory and remembering Bob's wise dictum - it takes a model to beat a model - let me use BB's model to try putting order in my own thoughts.
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