Think the fiscal cliff crisis was nasty? The political infighting over the debt ceiling and the budget could be just as bad, if not worse.
Just as it seemed Congress would close up shop for the year with no deal in place, the Senate reaches an interim agreement.
Americans watch in disappointment as Congress appears to let any chance of a last-minute deal slip away. 'They've got to settle this,' 1 person says.
After falling 158 points, the Dow ends below 13,000 for the first time since November. Talks between President Obama and GOP leaders are tense. Markets next week could be volatile.
Prices at the pump have been dropping for months. Industry analysts are trying to gauge future movement, but say the 'fiscal cliff' could be a determining factor.
The Dow ends down 18 points after falling as many as 151. The catalyst: News that the House will meet Sunday to discuss the fiscal cliff dispute. Apple leads the rebound. Jobless claims fall, but consumer confidence sags.
The pro-gun lobby suggests placing armed security guards in every American school. The idea was dismissed by many, however, and didn't seem to gain much policital support.
Stocks tumble as Republicans balk at House Speaker Boehner's tax bill. But things could have been worse. Nike jumps on strong North American business. Trading ends early Monday, and markets are closed Tuesday for Christmas.
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The Market Dispatches column has been discontinued. Here's where to find the latest stock and business news on MSN Money, and the latest from market writer Charley Blaine.
MONEY & POLITICS
Breaking up big banks is an untested solution to the too big to fail problem that attempts to isolate and dismantle large, troubled institutions while protecting the rest of the economy.
Cheap LED light bulbs cost more upfront -- between $8 to $10 apiece -- but begin to pay off within 18 months.
Six weeks later, most Americans have forgotten about the 2014 tax season -- except those who didn't file by the April 15 deadline.
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