The Week Ahead: 'Fiscal Cliff' Worries Bubble to the Surface

As we all are well aware by now, the 2012 presidential election is over, and President Obama will remain in office for the next four years as House and Senate retain the same respective majorities. With that overhang eliminated, the near-term focus of stock market has now shifted to the fiscal cliff, and whether a deal can be struck to avert the potential sequestration and tax hikes that are associated with it. 

In the mind's eye of the stock market, that means more than a fair amount of uncertainty remains. As most, if not all, investors recognize, nothing prompts stock-market anxiety and volatility more than uncertainty. It appears the stock market has contracted a quick case of winner's remorse, thanks to this recipe of items that need to be dealt with. The day after Election Day, all of the major stock market indices fell sharply lower, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling more than 350 points at session lows to cross well below the 13,000 line. The S&P 500 -- my preferred market index, given its wider breadth of companies -- fell 2.4%, and the Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 2.5%. ...866 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

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