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The Boston Globe

Business

Uncertainty on fiscal cuts stalls activity in Mass.

Universities, hospitals, and defense contractors are delaying hiring and expansion — and in some cases laying off workers — because Congress postponed spending decisions in the deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, leaving the future uncertain for these critical sectors of the Massachusetts economy.

Congress’s eleventh-hour compromise on Tuesdaysettled tax questions for most Americans, but lawmakers postponed for two months the contentious issues of how and where to reduce federal spending. That leaves scores of Massachusetts institutions and businesses in limbo, unsure of whether they can count on government contracts and grants that support their operations.

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