Get ready for a bumpy ride

Sunday, November 11, 2012
By Paul Martin

Storm and ‘cliff’ muddy economic picture
Anxious investors look to Washington to resolve budget standoff

By Jeffry Bartash
Nov. 11, 2012

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The U.S. economy entered the fourth quarter on solid footing, but the aftershocks of hurricane Sandy and the looming “fiscal cliff” could make for some shakier moments soon.

The hurricane tore a devastating path through New York and New Jersey and also hurt other states, disrupting the routines of consumers, retailers and manufacturers alike. The effects of the storm are already making it harder to get a read on how the economy is performing, though it’s only a temporary condition.

More long-lasting worries among businesses and investors center on the fiscal cliff — the onset of big tax increases and deep federal spending cuts on Jan. 1. These changes will take effect unless a divided Washington strikes a deal to put them off.

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