Manufacturers warn of ‘fiscal cliff’ threat

Ed Crooks and Robert Wright

General Electric and Honeywell, two of the largest American manufacturers, have reported robust results from their industrial businesses but warned of the threat posed by the approaching “fiscal cliff”: the possibility of steep tax rises and spending cuts taking effect in the US at the end of the year.

Both companies described global economic conditions as “challenging” but said they were continuing to increase their earnings through cost cutting and margin improvements.

They both raised concerns about the gridlock in Washington over budget policy. Dozens of tax cuts and allowances will expire and spending cuts will be triggered automatically from January 1 unless Congress can reach a deal.

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