'Cliff' avoidance remains key to a brighter outlook
US equities slipped yet again last week as investors remain focused on the upcoming fiscal cliff set to take effect at the beginning of 2013. Of course, some softer economic data and rising concerns over conflict in the Middle East did not help matters. For the week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.8 per cent to 12,588, the S&P 500 Index declined 1.5 per cent to 1,359 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.8 per cent to 2,853. Since the US election on 6 November, the S&P 500 has slid five per cent, indicating that investors remain highly anxious about the path forward.