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The Boston Globe

Nation

The federal fiscal cliff at a glance

The fiscal cliff is an economy-rattling combination of expiring tax cuts and major across-the-board spending reductions to the Pentagon and domestic programs. It is the result of failures of a bitterly divided Congress and White House to deal with the government’s spiraling debt or overhaul tax laws. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the austerity program would reduce the deficit by $503 billion through the end of next September, or approaching $700 billion for the entire calendar year. The budget office says millions of jobs could be lost. The effects include:

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