Fitch Ratings warned that the U.S. may be downgraded next year unless lawmakers avoid the so-called fiscal cliff and raise the debt ceiling in a timely manner, while Moodyâ€™s Investors Service said it will wait to see the economic impact should the nation experience a fiscal shock.
Congress and President Barack Obama must confront more than $600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect in 2013 or risk the economy tipping back into recession. Standard & Poorâ€™s stripped the U.S. of its AAA credit rating on Aug. 5, 2011, after months of political wrangling that pushed the nation to the deadline an agreement to lift the debt ceiling.
The U.S. rating depends on â€œa stabilization and then a downward trend in the ratio of federal debtâ€ to gross domestic product next year, according to a Moodyâ€™s statement. Fitch also said that the nation may lose its AAA ranking next year if the government fails to reduce the deficit.
Moodyâ€™s would likely â€œawait evidence that the economy could rebound from the shockâ€ of the U.S. falling off the fiscal cliff before considering restoring the nationâ€™s stable outlook from negative, according to the companyâ€™s statement.
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