Business spending, which led the rebound from the recent recession, has slowed significantly as companies put off investments in plants, equipment, and workers over concerns that Congress will be unable to avoid a catastrophic combination of steep tax increases and deep spending cuts before the end of the year. US business spending fell last quarter for first time in more than a year, an indicator that businesses are increasingly worried about the future and a harbinger of additional pullbacks in investment and hiring should the outlook darken.
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