What you need to know about the fiscal cliff

Amid intense debate about US fiscal policy, the country is racing towards disaster. Ultimately the answer is to rein in taxes and spending but to do it slowly.

US financial markets are getting increasingly concerned about the so-called "fiscal cliff” and what it might mean for the economy at the start of 2013. US stocks markets have now fallen for four straight weeks and bond yields are dropping back towards fresh record lows. The reasons for the concerns have validity when one considers what the fiscal cliff is.

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